When you undergo a breast explant procedure, do you have to get a breast lift, too? As with many aspects of plastic surgery, this will very likely depend on your personal circumstances–your physiology, your desired final results, and so on. So you’ll want to talk to your surgeon about your breast explant options–and whether any other breast enhancement add ons would be useful.

Do You Have to Get a Breast Lift After Your Breast Explant?

A breast explant procedure is performed when the patient wants to remove any previously inserted breast implants. But there’s often some concern over what happens to the breast, aesthetically, after the implants are removed. Many patients wonder if they have to undergo a breast lift after their breast explant procedure, for example.

The answer to that question will vary from patient to patient, and the best resource you have for finding individualized answers is your own plastic surgeon (that’s why it’s a good idea to seek out a highly qualified, board certified plastic surgeon). But there are some generalized answers available–answers that we offer for entertainment purposes (we’re not doctors).

What is Breast Explant Surgery and How Does it Work?

During a breast explant procedure, your surgeon will remove your old breast implants. Those old implants can be silicone based, saline based, or any number of newer implant types (the only implant type that cannot be removed in this method is a fat graft). Where possible, your surgeon will attempt to use the same incision lines that were put in place during your breast augmentation procedure (in order to minimize any possible scarring).

The idea is that your breasts will return to their previous, natural size once the implant is removed. That happens often enough, but not every time for every patient, so it’s a good idea to talk about these options with your surgeon.

Why Undergo Breast Explant?

Patients undergo breast implant procedures for a wide variety of reasons. Among them include:

  • Health issues related to the breast implant. This is fairly uncommon, but it can and does happen. In these cases, the decision to undergo breast explant surgery should be made in conjunction with your plastic surgeon.
  • Changes in aesthetics. As you grow older, you may no longer want your breast implants. In these cases, removing the implant makes a large amount of sense.
  • Patients want to return to a more natural look and feel. Yes, modern implants have come a long way in this department, but artificial implants are still going to feel… artificial. Some patients simply want to return to something that is simpler and more natural.

How Necessary is a Breast Lift?

Once your breast explant procedure is finished and your recovery is complete, your breasts will likely return back to their natural size. And in most cases, they’ll return to (more or less) their previous shape as well. But that’s not always the case.

A breast lift isn’t always going to be necessary when you undergo a breast explant procedure. But there are at least two conditions which make them more common:

  • If your breasts do not–or are not expected to–return to their natural size and shape, a surgeon may recommend a breast lift.
  • If you wish to achieve a more youthful look after your procedure, a surgeon will likely recommend a breast lift as well.

Breast lift can usually be performed concurrently to your breast explant procedure, but every patient is different, so be sure to ask your surgeon about any questions or concerns you may have.

Stick With Your Surgeon?

Just because you’re undergoing a similar breast enhancement procedure doesn’t mean you necessarily have to stick with the same surgeon. If you’re undergoing a breast explant procedure, it’s not uncommon to switch surgeons. Much will depend on your unique situation–including whether a breast lift is necessary with your breast explant surgery.


About the Author: Dan Voltz has been writing about plastic and cosmetic surgery for nearly five years. He’s always in touch with plastic and cosmetic surgeons to ensure he has the latest and most accurate information possible.

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