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Dr. Linder's Blog

What to do for a Ruptured Breast Implant

Posted On: May 04, 2009 Author: The Office of Dr. Stuart Linder Posted In: Breast Revision, Home

breast_revision98 Patients present to me for breast revision surgery weekly from all over the country. They are concerned that obviously a breast implant has ruptured. This is obviously much more noticeable with a saline than a silicone implant.

Saline implant ruptures can either be slow or quickly and usually over a several week period the breast will become quite diminished in size and significantly smaller than the contralateral side. As soon as you determine that you have a ruptured implant and it is obvious to the visual eye, you should seek a Board Certified Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon immediately to have surgical correction of this problem.

In Dr. Linder’s Beverly Hills and Las Vegas practice, patients who present with this discuss the options. The first and most impressive option is to go to surgery in the next few days in order to have the implant removed and pocket irrigated as soon as possible to prevent scar tissue contracture of the pocket and the pocket from walling itself off. The longer you wait with a ruptured implant, the more encapsulation scar tissue and the greater the risk of a Baker IV capsular contracture. The tendency of the body is to fill in space either with fluid or to tighten through scar tissue contracture. When an implant deflates, the spacer or the implant is a natural size is now obviously reduced and diminished and there is encroachment, entrapment and compete collapse of the pocket. Usually, the collapse is from superior to inferior and the pocket closes superiorly to inferiorly causing even inferior displacement of the implant which could lead to severe bottoming out, which can lead to other problems and severe breast deformity.

Silicone implant ruptures are more difficult to detect. If a patient has trauma such as blunt trauma from a motor vehicle accident and a whiplash from seatbelt, an MRI should be done immediately to detect rupture of the implant to determine if there is a positive linguini sign significant with a tear within the implant shell. A ruptured silicone implant should also be immediately repaired by simply explantation, open capsulotomy and replacement with a new silicone gel implant.

The quicker you address the problem of a ruptured implant, the less the trauma, damage, encapsulation and scar tissue can form around the bag causing more difficulty in recreating a normal shape.

Dr. Linder looks forward to seeing patients every day who require breast revision surgery in  Beverly Hills, Hollywood and throughout the world.