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Breast Augmentation Revision

Women visit us for breast augmentation revision surgery from San Antonio and the Austin area to replace or remove their implants. Most women who get breast implants are happy with their results, but revision surgery may be needed for reasons that range from wanting to change the size of the implants to correcting a complication. At Synergy Plastic Surgery, our highly trained plastic surgeons have the specialized expertise necessary to successfully perform revision procedures.

Revision Breast Augmentation
 Before & After Photos

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When to Consider Breast Augmentation Revision

Revision surgery after an earlier breast augmentation becomes desirable for many reasons. Sometimes patients decide that they want to change the size of their implants; others wish to switch from saline to silicone gel, or vice versa. And in rare cases, complications may require that one or both implants be replaced or removed.

Elective Implant Exchange

Some women decide to replace their existing, older breast implants with newer ones. This is often the case for women who have saline implants and want cohesive silicone gel implants for a more natural feel. Changing the size or shape of the implants is the other primary reason for elective implant exchange.

Visible Complications

These issues may appear gradually or be apparent immediately after the initial breast augmentation. They can include rippling or wrinkling, symmastia (sometimes called “uniboob” or “breadloafing”), or double-bubble, which occurs when an implant settles below the breast’s natural crease. Implants that sit too high, too low, or too far to the side may also require re-creating the implant pocket to produce more well-aligned results.

Capsular Contracture

This occurs when the breast tissue that naturally forms around the implant begins to tighten, distorting the implant’s shape. Depending on its severity, it can also be painful.

Deflated Implant

Saline implants that leak or tear cause deflation that becomes immediately noticeable. Silicone gel implants can tear, as well, but the cohesive gel means it retains its shape even if a tear develops. An imaging test is generally the only way to confirm a tear in a silicone gel implant. In either case, the patient needs revision surgery to replace the implant.

Whatever the reason you’re considering breast augmentation revision, it’s important to choose a plastic surgeon with the experience and training to perform this procedure. Scar tissue, stretched skin — and, in some cases, compromised chest anatomy — all make revison procedures more challenging than the initial augmentation procedure.

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How Much Does Breast Augmentation or Implant Revision Surgery Cost?

In general, the cost of breast augmentation or implant revision ranges from $7,000 to $20,000. It is typically higher than a primary procedure because revision surgery is often highly complex, particularly when performed to correct complications. It’s difficult to provide a direct comparison because prices for breast augmentation will vary significantly from surgeon to surgeon. If the revision is as simple as replacing breast implants with new ones, the cost may well be comparable to your initial breast augmentation surgery.

[Dr. Kerr] took one look and immediately knew how to repair the thin skin and leaking saline implants. Dr. Kerr thoroughly explained what would most likely be beneficial for me, and the best plan of revision. I felt such a sense of relief that I was doing the right thing for my body, and that Dr. Kerr was the right doctor to help me.”

RealSelf user grace415

Your Revision Breast Augmentation Procedure

Our plastic surgeons perform breast augmentation revision procedures at our Stonegate Plastic Surgery Center, a private, fully accredited, modern surgical facility adjacent to our Round Rock offices. The techniques used in your breast implant revision depend on the reasons you’re undergoing the procedure. The techniques may include one or all of the following:

  • Combining the revision with a breast lift if weight fluctuations, pregnancy, or aging have made your breasts less perky. This is often the case for women who are replacing implants that are several years old.
  • Changing the location of your implant from in front of the chest muscle (subglandular) to behind the muscle (submuscular) if rippling is present. Moving the implants behind the muscle is necessary when patients have less existing breast tissue to adequately cover the implants. A submuscular placement is also less likely to develop capsular contracture.
  • Using the Strattice™ internal bra to provide support for the implants and help prevent visible rippling by thickening the skin, while retaining a more natural look and feel (see animation). Strattice is a material that helps promotes tissue growth and improve the skin’s elasticity.

Recovery After Breast Augmentation Revision

The recovery following breast augmentation revision is often quicker than the initial surgery. That’s because the space for the breast implants already exists, so the body is more accustomed to it. Recovery still requires rest and following your surgeon’s postoperative instructions; however, recovery time will vary with your reasons for pursuing revision surgery.

Here’s a look into what to expect as you recuperate:

  • Incision care: Your incisions will begin to heal within the first couple of days, but it may take 4 to 6 weeks for them to heal completely closed. Make sure to keep them clean and dry and avoid wearing any garments with underwires or materials that may irritate them.
  • Bruising and swelling: Your bruising and swelling will likely peak around day 3 before resolving gradually over the next 2 to 4 weeks. Some minor residual swelling may persist for a few months. Your post-surgical bra will compress your breasts to keep swelling to a minimum.
  • Pain management: Your surgeon will prescribe pain medication to help with any soreness during the first few days. After that time, you will likely be able to transition to an over-the-counter painkiller as soreness tapers off. If you moved to a larger implant size, you may also feel a bit of tightness in your breasts.
  • Exercise: Your timeline for resuming workouts may vary depending on the specifics of your procedure. In most cases, you can begin returning to exercise after about 4 to 6 weeks with your surgeon’s clearance.
  • Scars: Most of the time, our surgeons perform breast augmentation revision using the same incision placements as your initial surgery, leaving behind no new scarring.

Breast Augmentation Revision FAQ

How soon after breast augmentation can I get a revision?

We generally recommend waiting a minimum of 6 months after a primary breast augmentation procedure before scheduling a revision procedure. The breast pocket created for your implant needs time to fully settle (even in the case of capsular contracture), and the body needs ample time to return to a place that’s healthy enough for surgery.

How do I know if my revision procedure should include a breast lift?

A breast lift raises and reshapes breasts that sag. If you have mild sagging, breast implants may be enough to fill out your breasts. If your breasts currently sag, a breast lift is likely necessary to give you the beautiful shape you want.

What if I want to get my breast implants removed without replacing them?

This is called breast implant removal or “explant” surgery, and it has become increasingly popular in recent years. If you opt to remove your implants, you will very likely benefit from including a breast lift to tighten your breast skin and correct a deflated look that is common after removing implants. 

What happens if I become pregnant after a breast revision?

Because pregnancy and breastfeeding are likely to change the size and shape of your breasts, our surgeons recommend delaying revision surgery until after you are done having babies. If you do not plan to become pregnant in the near future, it’s perfectly safe to have breast surgery.

To discuss your breast augmentation revision options with one of our plastic surgeons at either our Round Rock or Austin office, request a consultation using the online form. Or call us at (512) 244-1439 to schedule an appointment.