According to many implant manufacturers, breast implants are typically expected to last about 10 years. However, breast implant lifespan isn’t an exact science, and can depend on a number of individual variables.
Breast Implant Integrity
The most common reason breast implants end up with a shortened lifespan is if damage occurs to the implant during surgery. For example, implants that are inserted forcefully into a too-small incision are more likely to rupture if the outer shell is weakened as a result.
Other factors that can compromise breast implant integrity include using implants that are the wrong size for the breast or that are deliberately overfilled. It’s important to choose an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon to limit the likelihood of these issues occurring.
As far as manufacturers are concerned, breast implants should always be changed somewhere between eight to 10 years after your initial breast augmentation. However, most plastic surgeons feel that there’s no reason to proactively pursue revision surgery unless you’re experiencing signs that replacement could be necessary:
- Hardening of the scar tissue surrounding the breast implant known as capsular contracture.
- A visible change in how breasts look or feel
- A shift in implant placement
Many women also choose revision breast augmentation for personal reasons, such as to make a change in implant size or type, even without any additional signs that implant replacement may be necessary.
Both saline and silicone breast implants should be long-lasting under normal circumstances. However, replacement of any breast implant suspected to have issues is recommended for the best long-term breast augmentation results.
Dr. Lee B. Daniel is board certified by both the American Board of Plastic Surgery and General Surgery. He is a member of numerous societies including the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.