Routine Breast Implant Replacements
Do All Breast Implants Need To Be Routinely Replaced Every 10 Years?
Our short answer to this commonly asked question is: No
While it is unrealistic to expect that every breast implant will last forever, we believe that, in the absence of a problem, ROUTINE implant replacement every 10 years is neither necessary nor justified.
Essentially, the life span of any implant is unknown. Although there are many women who have had the same silicone breast implants in place for many years without any problems, there are also women who have had to replace their implants within a relatively short period of time when a problem has arisen. In other words, the exact life span of any implant is unpredictable.
Accordingly, we strongly believe that there is no justification in subjecting every woman to the repeat costs, inconvenience and risks of repeat surgery every 10 years in the absence of any problem.
In support of our view, bear in mind that:
- Implants do not come with any ‘Use By’ or Expiry Date.
- If routine replacement every 10 years was necessary, regulations would certainly exist requiring surgeons to replace every implant every 10 years – and this is certainly not the case!
Advocates of the 10-yearly routine replacement policy argue that silicone implants can “silently” rupture and that 10% of implants rupture after 10 years. However, in reality, an implant could rupture any number of years after its insertion or may never rupture.
Therefore, we believe that rather than replace every implant after 10 years, a more logical approach is for patients to check the integrity of their implants with a simple Breast Ultrasound every 18 months to 2 years. If the Ultrasound ever suggests a possible rupture, and it is confirmed by MRI Examination, replacement is then certainly indicated and justified.
Do Breast Implants Carry a Manufacturer’s Warranty?
However, this does vary with each brand of implant and the reason(s) for its replacement.
For full details, please refer to each manufacturer’s Product Warranty Policy online.