While the vast majority of breast augmentation patients choose to maintain their implants for life, some women decide to undergo implant removal or breast explant surgery. While explant surgery is a safe and efficient solution for many common aesthetic and medical implant concerns, it’s vital to take your time and make an informed decision about who will do this procedure for you. Dr. Armijo is an expert board-certified plastic surgeon with superior skill and training in breast surgeries.
With Dr. Armijo’s guidance, your explant surgery will be customized to ensure minimal scarring, a quick recovery period, stunning results, and the highest possible levels of safety and care. If you think now could be the right time for breast explant surgery, read on. For answers to any specific questions or concerns, please give our Dallas, TX office a call at (214) 540-1434.
Our team is here and ready to help.
Why Choose Breast Implant Removal?
Breast implants aren’t made to last a lifetime. That said, if you’re happy with the look and feel of your implants, there’s no need to have them removed. There are several common reasons women decide they no longer want to keep their implants:
- Personal Preference: Many of our explant patients simply no longer want their implants due to a change in aesthetic preference. Explant surgery offers a transformation and the opportunity to refine your body contour to match the look you currently want.
- Increased Comfort: Especially for patients with larger implants, everyday activities and certain exercises can become challenging or even painful over time. Implant removal reduces any movement restrictions and minimizes any back pain or muscle strain caused by the weight and bulk of the implants.
- BIA-ALCL: This extremely rare form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, known as breast implant-associated anaplastic large-cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) has been clinically linked to a small group of textured breast implants. It forms around the breast capsule and can cause hardening of the tissue and discomfort, but it is not breast cancer. When diagnosed early, explant surgery offers a proven and safe treatment method.
- Breast Implant Illness (BII): While there is no medical diagnosis for BII, some women feel that their implants may be connected to a variety of symptoms, including headaches, fatigue, and chronic pain. If a patient believes implant removal will improve their health, we can help.
In most cases, our patients often cite some combination of these reasons. If you’re on the fence about implant removal, scheduling a consultation with Dr. Armijo to discuss your concerns and options can be a big help. Patients can choose between breast revision surgery to correct an issue, breast reduction, implant exchange, or removal without replacement.
Quick Breast Explant Facts:
- Procedure Length: 1 hour
- Anesthesia: General Anesthesia
- In/Outpatient: Outpatient
- Common Side Effects: swelling, bruising, numbness, hypersensitivity
- Recovery Length: 3-7 days
What Happens During Breast Explant Surgery?
Breast implant removal surgery is usually completed using general anesthesia, though in some cases, Dr. Armijo may perform it as an outpatient procedure. If possible, Dr. Armijo will use the same incision sites as your previous breast enhancement surgery, causing no additional scarring. Whenever necessary, Dr. Armijo can perform an en bloc capsulectomy involving the complete removal of the scar tissue capsule surrounding the implant, along with the device itself.
Once Dr. Armijo has recreated the empty “pocket,” he will irrigate with antibiotic solution and, if necessary, place drains to avoid fluid build-up. For most patients, the breasts will not return to their original shape after implant removal. To address aesthetic concerns, Dr. Armijo can pair your implant removal with a variety of procedures to create a beautiful breast contour post-explant.
A breast lift will remove any excess skin while Dr. Armijo reshapes the remaining tissue for a sculpted, feminine result. Turning back the clock on breast laxity, this procedure also allows Dr. Armijo to craft ideal nipple placement. Altogether, this procedure creates a youthful and perky appearance to the breasts.
Breast augmentation via fat transfer is another natural means of making up for lost volume after implant removal. After harvesting fat from another part of the body, Dr. Armijo purifies and reinjects the healthy tissue into your breasts for a natural-looking and feeling enhancement. Plus, as liposuction is necessary for fat transfer augmentation, you’ll also benefit from transformative body sculpting in a problem area, such as the abdomen, thighs, or buttocks.
Breast Explant Recovery
One of the major benefits of breast explant surgery is a relatively easy recovery period. In most cases, recovery is significantly easier than your initial augmentation. Generally, patients experience minor swelling at worst, requiring a few days of rest to subside. You will need drains for a few days if you opt for a full en bloc capsulectomy.
We’ll provide you with all the information and tools necessary for a safe recovery. It’s up to you to follow your post-op instructions as carefully as possible to minimize the risk of complications and encourage a fast healing process.
How should I prepare for breast explant surgery?
Just like any other major surgery, you should stop smoking or taking any medications or supplements that cause an increased risk of bleeding two weeks before your appointment. We’ll provide you with a full list of medications and supplements to avoid and discuss your medical history during your initial consultation.
Before stopping any medications, be sure to consult with your PCP.
Will my breasts return to the same size they were before my initial augmentation?
Unfortunately, this question can’t be answered with a simple yes or no. Several factors affect how your breasts will look after explant surgery. The most significant indicators are your age, skin elasticity, the size of your implants, and how long you have had them. If you’ve had larger implants for a long time, it’s more likely you may have excess skin after explant surgery.
In this case, a breast lift may be required to restore and rejuvenate the appearance of your breasts.
Does Dr. Armijo perform en bloc capsulectomies?
Yes, if indicated for any reason, Dr. Armijo can perform en bloc capsulectomies. This is the complete removal of the capsule and implant at the same time. To learn more about en bloc capsulotomies, please ask Dr. Armijo during your consultation.
How much does breast implants removal cost?
Every surgery Dr. Armijo performs is designed to meet each patient’s unique anatomy, goals, and needs. As such, the price can vary from one patient to the next. During your consultation, we will provide you with a clear estimate of all pre- and post-operative costs.
When working with a board-certified plastic surgeon, you can trust that we’ll provide you with up-to-date and accurate information––never any hidden fees.
Will removing my capsules reduce systemic symptoms?
There is no way for Dr. Armijo to ensure symptom relief post-explant. However, many of our patients notice an immediate improvement after surgery.
What are the symptoms of Breast Implant Illness (BII)?
Dr. Armijo meets with every patient one-on-one to ensure that he understands all concerns, and we can find the optimal solution. At present, there isn’t a diagnostic test designed or approved for BII. Still, we take our patient’s concerns very seriously and will do everything we can to help you feel satisfied with your body, health, and wellbeing. Listening is the first step.
Some of the most common symptoms of BII include, but are not limited to:
- Fatigue and lack of energy
- Muscle pain and weakness
- Chest pain
- Hair loss
- Liver or kidney dysfunction
- Frequent urination
- Cognitive dysfunction (e.g., memory loss, difficulty concentrating)
- Chronic inflammation
- Shortness of breath
- Dry eye
- Night sweats
- Low libido
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Irritable bowel or bladder
- Poor sleep and/or insomnia
- Ear ringing
- Back and neck pain
Schedule a Consultation
Every woman deserves the right to choose how her body looks and feels. If you think now could be the right time for breast implant removal, Dr. Armijo and our expert team can help. Breast explant surgery is a safe and efficient means of removing implants without causing additional scarring.
If you’re interested in learning more about implant removal, your next step is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Armijo. During this meeting, we’ll have a chance to go over your medical history and initial surgery records. After that, Dr. Armijo will listen to your goals and concerns and work with you to create a customized treatment plan. To schedule your consultation, please give our Dallas, TX office a call at (214) 540-1434 or contact us online today.