Does Revision Breast Surgery Require a Lift?


While modern breast implants are long-lasting, and most women are happy with their augmented breasts for a decade or more, sometimes women need to have older implants replaced because of various health issues. In addition, some women choose to have their implants replaced for cosmetic reasons — to go bigger or smaller or to improve breast shape.

When you have breast revision surgery to replace implants, will you also need a breast lift? The answer depends on the reasons you’re considering breast revision, the resilience of your breast skin and tissue, and the extent of breast sagging.

Reasons for Having Breast Revision Surgery

You might need or choose to have breast revision surgery for a range of reasons.

If you’ve experienced a problem with your implants, such as a rupture and leak or thickening of the scar tissue around the implant, revision is a medical necessity. More often, breast revision comes down to choice – to change the implants’ size or for another cosmetic reason. You may also have implant revision done to correct for the natural changes brought on by aging and childbearing, which can include sagging and changes in your breasts’ size and fullness. Whatever the reason, the goal is generally to restore an attractive appearance to the breasts while maintaining breast health.

The reason for the revision drives the plan for the procedure — how to remove the old implants, whether capsular tissue is also involved, and the type, size, and shape of the replacement implants. Your breasts’ appearance will also determine whether you should combine your implant revision with a breast lift.

When Is It Beneficial to Combine Breast Revision With a Breast Lift?

Breast revision surgery alone, without a breast lift, can sometimes give disappointing results. Instead of the firm, full, rounded breasts you hope for, you could have sagging breasts or breasts that look deflated. These issues can happen when:

  • Your pre-revision breasts are sagging, with the nipples pointing downward or positioned below the crease beneath your breasts.
  • You are choosing revision to reduce your implants’ size, and your skin and breast tissue do not have the resilience to spring back to a firm, round shape with the smaller implants.
  • Your surgeon is removing capsular tissue as part of the revision procedure, and using supportive mesh or collagen matrix material to reconstruct the pocket for the implant.
  • You choose to remove the implants and not replace them.

If any of these apply to you, your surgeon may suggest combining your breast implant revision with a breast lift.

When Is a Breast Lift Unnecessary With Breast Revision?

You may not need a breast lift with your breast revision surgery if:

  • Your breasts are not sagging.
  • Your breast skin and tissue have the resilience to form a firm, rounded shape around the new implants.

Explore Your Options in an Expert Consultation

Every breast revision procedure is unique, and you should rely on an expert plastic surgeon to advise you on the most effective approach to your procedure — the one that will give you the results you want with the smallest risk of complications. Dr. Stephen Bresnick in Encino, CA, is a breast revision specialist. He has performed over 2,000 revisional breast surgical procedures and has lectured on the topic at national plastic surgery teaching seminars. He has built a reputation for his compassionate approach and superior artistry. Call us at (818) 981-3333 or contact us today to schedule a consultation.

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