Breast augmentations continue to be the most widely performed cosmetic surgical procedure in the United States. In the vast majority of those cases, I help women get the shapelier, perkier breasts they always wanted. But for others, their new breasts fall short of their expectations. In those instances, they can appear distorted and even result in physical pain.
A breast augmentation revision is a surgical procedure that addresses issues that stem from an initial breast augmentation. They can be concerns that are immediately apparent or develop later on. Revision surgery is also appropriate for women who were satisfied with their outcome initially, but whose desires for their body changed over time.
Poor positioning of the implant, bottoming out of the implant, incorrect implant size, and poor scarring are the most common reasons women pursue corrective surgery following their breast augmentations. In rare instances, implants can rupture, in which case we would remove any free silicone and scar tissue. At that point, we would normally replace the breast implants with new implants.
A condition called capsular contracture also prompts those affected to seek out a breast augmentation revision. Here, the tissue tightens and contracts around the implant, resulting in unnaturally firm and distorted breasts that can be quite painful. While the cause is unknown, several evidence-based methods have been shown to prevent it from recurring.
What does it entail?
Here at Davis Cosmetic Plastic Surgery, a breast augmentation revision involves removing and/or replacing implants, removing scar tissue, and/or restoring symmetry to the breasts. However, revision surgery tends to be more complicated than the original breast augmentation.
However, done correctly, a breast augmentation revision can safely provide a woman with the outcome she had in mind when she entered into her first surgery.
During the procedure itself, I will create incisions that we discussed during your consultation. Whenever possible, I try to use the incisions from the original surgery to minimize scarring. If necessary, the current implants are then removed and either replaced or the breasts are left without them. We may also perform a formal breast lift, or a periareolar lift – moving the nipples back to where they are anatomically supposed to be – after we remove the implant. Any scar tissue will also be removed. In all, the surgery can take anywhere from an hour to three hours, depending on its complexity.
Typically, recovery is about six weeks, but most are able to return to work and their routines after a week or two.
How to find a surgeon
Because revision surgery is more complex than a standard breast augmentation, seek out a board-certified plastic surgeon who has extensive experience performing the procedure.
It’s also critical that your surgeon be a good listener. The consultation, always an essential part of the process, takes on even more significance here. Each woman has a unique aesthetic goal for her breast augmentation. Should you ever feel like your interests or concerns are being ignored, find another surgeon.