Breast implant removal Rancho Cucamonga (Explant surgery)

If you’ve decided it’s time to have your breast implants removed, our cosmetic surgeons are here to develop a custom-tailored treatment plan so that you can feel confident and self-assured in your body! We’re here to counsel you on the best options for your specific case, like whether the implant capsule should be removed and whether or not you have a lift as part of the surgery. It’s our goal to come up with a surgical plan, in collaboration with you, that provides peace of mind and a natural-looking result.

Breast implant removal after breast augmentation

The purpose of breast explant surgery (also known as breast implant removal) is to remove implants placed during a previous breast augmentation.Typically, a patient requests an explant following complications from the original surgery, such as an infection or a change in the appearance of the breasts. It is also normal to want to return your body to your pre-augmented appearance. (If you prefer to replace your implants, that procedure is referred to as revision breast augmentation.)

In addition to removing the implant, your surgeon may also perform a capsulectomy, which removes some or all of the capsule of scar tissue around the implant, as well as a cosmetic procedure such as breast lift or fat grafting.

  • Alleviation of Physical Discomfort: Removing implants can relieve back, neck, and shoulder pain that may be associated with the weight of large implants.
  • Elimination of Implant-Related Complications: It can resolve complications such as capsular contracture, implant rupture, or leakage.
  • Reduction in Health Concerns: Some individuals experience systemic symptoms (often referred to as breast implant illness) that they attribute to their implants; removal may alleviate these symptoms.
  • Improved Physical Activity: Without the extra weight and volume of implants, physical activities and exercise can be more comfortable.
  • Easing of Maintenance: Removal eliminates the need for future implant replacements or surveillance (like MRI scans for silicone implants).
  • Resolution of Breast Asymmetry or Deformity: If implants have caused asymmetry or undesirable changes in breast shape, removal can address these issues.
  • Anesthesia: Medications used to prevent pain and alter consciousness during surgery; in breast implant removal, general anesthesia is commonly used.
  • Breast Implant Illness (BII): A term used by some to describe a variety of symptoms believed by them to be related to breast implants, often a reason for seeking implant removal.
  • Capsular Contracture: A complication where scar tissue forms around the breast implant, causing it to feel firm or hard, sometimes leading to the decision for implant removal.
  • En Bloc Removal: A surgical technique where the implant and surrounding capsule (scar tissue) are removed together as a single unit, often requested in the context of BII.
  • Implant Displacement: Implants can shift from their original position, leading to asymmetry, discomfort, or an unnatural appearance.
  • Implant Leakage: Occurs when silicone implants have ruptured, leading to silicone leaking into the breast tissue.
  • Implant Rupture: The breaking or leaking of a breast implant, necessitating its removal.
  • Mammography: A breast imaging technique used to screen for abnormalities; important for patients with breast implants to monitor for complications.
  • Mastopexy: Also known as a breast lift, a procedure that can be performed in conjunction with breast implant removal to address sagging.
  • Necrosis: When tissue around the implant has died, leading to wound healing problems and infection.
  • Recovery Period: The time required after breast implant removal for healing and return to normal activities; specifics vary based on the extent of the surgery and the individual’s healing process.
  • Rippling: Visible or palpable wrinkling of the implant, which can be aesthetically displeasing or uncomfortable, leading to one having their implants removed or revised. 
  • Scar Tissue: Fibrous tissue that forms as wounds heal, including after the initial breast augmentation, which can be modified or removed during implant removal.
  • Seroma: A collection of fluid around the implant, which can cause swelling and discomfort.
  • Total Capsulectomy: A surgical procedure to remove the capsule of scar tissue that forms around a breast implant, often performed during implant removal.

Capsulectomy options in breast implant removal surgery

The breast explant procedure is tailored to the needs of the patient, and often includes the removal of both the implant and surrounding scar tissue. In cases where capsulectomy is needed to remove the scar tissue capsule from around the implants, your surgeon will help you choose from a few methods:

  • Partial capsulectomy: After your surgeon removes the implant, part of the scar capsule is removed.
  • Total capsulectomy: First the implant is taken out, then the breast implant capsule is removed in a second step.
  • En bloc capsulectomy: The implant and its surrounding scar capsule are removed as a single unit. This requires a longer scar, and may not be the safest option for every patient; it is usually reserved for cases where the implant poses a medical risk.

Further, you will have incision options for where the scars will be place on your skin: Depending on your unique anatomy, your other procedure details, and where your original incisions were placed for breast implant surgery, your surgeon may make incisions around the areola, along the crease underneath the breast, or in the armpit. During any breast surgery, incisions are designed to be discreet as possible, and you will have your surgical team’s support and advice on scar care best practices after surgery.

Combined cosmetic procedures

As with your original breast augmentation, you may choose to combine procedures for enhanced results. The most common options to lift any remaining sagging or address a “deflated” appearance in the breasts are breast lift and fat grafting. A lift involves additional incisions, typically placed around the areola and extending to the breast base in an anchor shape; fat grafting is less transformative than a lift, but involves liposuction in a donor area so that a small amount of fat can be added back for a natural though subtle “breast augmentation.”

You may also be able to safely undergo another procedure such as liposuction or a tummy tuck for a full body transformation while under general anesthesia for your removal procedure.

Reasons patients choose explant

Removing your breast implants is an individual decision that you may decide on for aesthetic reasons, medical reasons, or a combination of the two. Here are some reasons that the Rancho Cucamonga patients we see are seek to reverse their breast augmentation:

  • Personal preference: Some patients are simply no longer in love with their augmented look
  • Saline breast implant rupture: When saline implants rupture, the saline leaks out (which is completely safe) and the implant visibly deflates
  • Silicone breast implant rupture: Rupture of cohesive silicone implants can only be detected during your regular MRI or ultrasound scans of your breasts
  • Capsular contracture: This complication results in an abnormal tightening and hardening of the scar tissue surrounding the implant
  • BIA-ALCL: Some patients may choose to have an explant due to concerns about BIA-ALCL, or breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma—a rare form of cancer associated with textured-surface breast implants
  • Breast implant illness (BII): Symptoms associated with BII may be resolved with explant, although research into treatment is ongoing

This is a personal decision you make for yourself and your body, and we recommend consulting with an experienced, highly-qualified cosmetic surgeon who can provide you with answers and explain your medical options (like capsule removal) and aesthetic options (like a lift) to help you make an informed choice that best suits your needs. We will offer a very thorough consultation to discuss the risks and benefits associated with surgery.

Candidates for surgery: What to consider before deciding to remove breast implant(s)

A patient who is a good candidate for breast implant removal will identify with the following:

  • In good physical health
  • At a stable weight
  • A non-smoker

In addition, you may be experiencing symptoms that lead you to want to remove your implants. Dr. Jacob Haiavy, Dr. Irene Tower, or Dr. Emma Ryan will carefully review your medical history to determine if you can safely undergo surgery at this time, and will talk with you about what kind of results you can expect to see after surgery. It is critical to your surgeon that you have realistic expectations for the results that can be accomplished through surgery, so results will be a key part of the conversation during your consultation.

The consultation

During your personal consultation at our Rancho Cucamonga cosmetic surgery office, you and your surgeon will sit down to discuss your concerns and goals, examine you, discuss your breast procedure options, and outline a surgical plan. It is critical to discuss all of your concerns in this meeting to allow them to assess you fully and provide the best procedure options that achieve a beautiful result and peace of mind. After you have an established surgical plan, you will talk with our patient care coordinators to get a comprehensive fee quote for the cost of your breast implant removal surgery. Health insurance typically only covers breast implant removal if the surgery is deemed to not be elective, but check with your carrier in advance if you believe you may qualify for coverage.

Cosmetic surgery recovery

It is normal to experience soreness, swelling, and bruising for up to 2 weeks after explant. You will be instructed to gently move and even take a shower within the first 24 hours after your procedure. Depending on the details of your procedure (i.e. whether capsule removal was included), your experience and your recovery time vary, but most patients report that the downtime was not vastly different from their original breast augmentation.

You will likely be able to return to work and most normal activities in 1-2 weeks, and you’ll need to wear a supportive bra/compression garment for several weeks to help reduce swelling and give you the best results. We will provide you with specific instructions on how to care for your incisions as they heal. Most post-op swelling usually subsides within about 4 weeks, and your surgeon will gradually guide you back to your exercise routine and more vigorous activities after 4-6 weeks.

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Breast explant risks

Before having breast implant removal, it’s key to understand and talk with your surgeon about the potential side effects. These can include infection, bleeding, and changes in nipple or breast skin sensation. (Soreness, pain, and swelling are normal, expected parts of the recovery process.) If you have any medical conditions, like diabetes or high blood pressure, it is critical that you discuss these with your doctor prior to cosmetic surgery. We will ask for your full medical history as part of your paperwork before the initial consultation.

Understanding that many patients undergo this procedure for greater peace of mind, your surgeon will work with you to help you weigh the potential benefits and risks of a breast implant removal surgery.

Schedule your consultation at Inland Cosmetic Surgery

Dr. Jacob Haiavy, Dr. Irene Tower, and Dr. Emma Ryan have the credentials and experience to provide you with beautiful results. Throughout your cosmetic surgery journey, you will be supported by both your doctor and our stellar aesthetic team. At Inland Cosmetic, we perform breast implant removals every month—we’re not solely breast augmentation surgeons—so we understand your concerns and are here to listen and help you find the peace of mind you deserve. To begin the conversation, schedule a personal consultation with one of our cosmetic surgeons. Call 909-987-0899 or contact us online today.