How Often Do Breast Implants Need To Be Replaced?

By: Dr. Sean Kelishadi, M.D. FACS


With more and more women of all ages and walks of life pursuing breast augmentation – and for various reasons – the needs and goals can certainly vary from patient to patient. Furthermore, the advances in medicine and technology now offer women a vast array of choices when it comes to breast implant type, size, surgical approach, and other details of the procedure. Needless to say, breast augmentation has become a highly customizable cosmetic surgery that can be tailored to each woman. This makes it more important than ever to understand your breast augmentation options and know what to expect before, during, and after your procedure, including knowing how long your breast implants may last and when – as well as why – you may need breast implant replacement in the future.

Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi and the caring team at SSK Plastic Surgery are dedicated to helping Newport Beach, CA breast augmentation patients understand all of the exciting options for their procedure and make selections that will help them best achieve their goals for stunning, long-lasting, life-changing results. With the help of SSK Plastic Surgery, discover how breast augmentation can help you restore a more youthful, feminine look, and learn when implant replacement may be necessary.

Which kind of breast implant is best?

Because each woman is different, there is truly no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing which type of breast implant is best in Newport Beach, CA. That said, each implant type does have its own set of unique characteristics that may make it more or less appropriate for a specific patient, depending on her needs, goals, body type, and other factors. The three breast augmentation options, along with some of their most notable features and benefits, include:

  • Saline implants: Saline implants have been around the longest and are still the preferred choice for many patients and surgeons. Saline implants are filled with a saline solution and can be inserted into the breast pocket, either filled or unfilled. When inserted unfilled, patients may have a slightly smaller scar than with other implant types, making this an appealing option for some women. Another advantage of saline implants is that the solution can safely be absorbed by the body in the event of a rupture. However, the implant will quickly deflate if ruptured, leaving the woman with a significantly asymmetric look that will require fairly immediate implant replacement to correct. Finally, saline implants are FDA approved for use in patients under the age of 22, unlike silicone implants.

  • Silicone gel implants: Silicone gel implants are an exciting option and are selected by millions of women. Many people agree that silicone gel implants have a more natural look and feel when compared to saline implants. Silicone implants are also less prone to showing ripples, making them a fantastic option for thinner women or those with less natural breast tissue to conceal rippling. One important thing to be aware of when it comes to silicone gel implants is that, if ruptured, the rupture can be difficult or even impossible to detect without the use of imaging studies. Because the gel-like substance is contained within the capsule and not a fluid that will leak out, the implant will not deflate and often shows no visible sign of rupture. However, it is important that the damaged implant is still replaced, meaning many women with silicone gel implants require intermittent imaging studies.

  • Fat transfer to the breast: For women seeking a more natural alternative to synthetic breast implants, fat transfer to the breast may be a perfect solution. During breast augmentation using fat transfer, the surgeon harvests fat from another area of the patient’s body and injects it into the breast for an enhanced size, shape, and contour. While the results can be gorgeous, there is a limit to how much fat can be transferred, meaning patients wanting a more dramatic size increase may be better suited to breast augmentation with implants. Another consideration for fat grafting is that the results can be significantly compromised with weight fluctuation.

How long do breast implants last?

One of the most important things that patients considering breast augmentation should understand is that breast implants are not designed to be lifelong devices and will need to be replaced at some point. Many women are able to enjoy their breast implants for up to ten years before replacement may be needed, but in some cases breast implant replacement may be required sooner. While breast augmentation complications are relatively rare, they can occur and often lead to the need for replacement. Additionally, changes in personal taste or lifestyle may lead a woman to seek implant replacement or removal. Some of the most common reasons for breast implant replacement include:

  • Implant rupture
  • Capsular contracture
  • Implant bottoming out
  • Change in personal preference
  • Desire to change implant type
  • Desire to change implant size
  • Need for breast lift

How do I find the best breast implant surgeon in Orange County, CA?

With the extremely personal and individual nature of breast augmentation, choosing a highly qualified, experienced, and knowledgeable surgeon is essential in achieving beautiful, natural-looking, long-lasting results. During your consultation, make sure to ask questions about the surgeon’s training and experience. It is also helpful to read patient reviews and browse before-and-after galleries to see what kinds of results may be possible for you.

If you are ready to finally feel more feminine, beautiful, and confident, call the friendly team at SSK Plastic Surgery in Newport Beach, CA to schedule your one-on-one breast augmentation consultation with exceptional board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi. We are proud to also offer virtual consultations that can be completed from the comfort and privacy of your own home. Don’t wait any longer; take the first step toward achieving your ultimate aesthetic goals with breast augmentation today!

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.