Hi everyone, this is Dr. Effie Politis and I’d like to talk about a great article on the April edition of the PRS called contemporary strategies in breast explantation surgery.

So, what is explantation surgery? It is a surgery in which someone proceeds with removing their implants and not replacing them. I’m seeing quite a few patients that are interested in this surgery for various reasons. We all know that implants are man-made devices.

The first reason that women would opt to undergo the surgery is because of implant rupture. I tell women that breast implants are not a “one and done” device, they are a prosthetic that is placed in your body so you need surveillance and you likely will need one or several surgeries in the future if you opt for breast implants. There is a small chance of them rupturing. We can discuss more the difference between saline and silicone ruptures in the future.

Number two is Breast Implant-Associated ALCL (anaplastic large cell lymphoma), this is a rare lymphoma associated with textured implants which I do not use. So it’s not really an issue with my practice but I do see some patients with prior history of textured implants.

Number three is breast implant illness. This is a large topic that’s often discussed on social media. It’s a name given to patients for a wide range of symptoms. The current data shows that there is no cause and effect relationship between implants and these symptoms, however, we certainly are proponents of what women want to do with their bodies. So if they want their implants removed they certainly have the right to have that done. However, the data based on long term studies does not show whether explantation surgery reliably reduces these symptoms.

The last reason women want their implants removed is for non-medical reasons like effects of aging, weight changes, pregnancy, and shifting perspective in aesthetic beauty, as we know there is a movement towards smaller breasts. So women seeking explantation surgery just need to be aware of the risks and benefits in any adjunct surgeries that can be done to enhance their breasts. We look at each woman on an individual basis. It’s a woman’s choice to have their implants removed and we consider the patient’s risk profile, patient preference as well as safety when guiding them on whether explantation surgery is the right surgery for them. I would advise you all to always consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon with a specialty in breast surgery when considering these types of procedures. You can always DM me or look at my website as I’ll have more information. Thank you so much.

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