The True Risks of Breast Implants

The True Risks of Breast Implants

Plastic surgery is more common and accessible today than ever. Breast augmentation has become one of the most popular procedures because large breasts are highly valued in today’s society. It’s also a quick way for a woman to improve the overall appearance of her figure and her sex appeal, and let’s face it, all women want perky ones. There are many women who undergo implant surgery as a reconstructive procedure because of cancer, birth defects, or other health issues. For these women it’s a medical procedure to restore what they have lost. Of course, some women who have had mastectomies may choose not to reconstruct, but many do and it’s wonderful that they have that option. For those who are considering breast implants here are a few of the risks and problems associated with the surgery and the implants themselves. The implants referred to in the article are saline, as the only uses for silicone ones are in reconstructive surgery or other health related breast surgery.

The cost of breast implants is between $5000 and $7000. Plastic surgery is an elective surgery so it’s not covered by insurance unless it is related to a health problem, such as reconstructive surgery. You may think, so what? I want those big boobs and I’m willing to pay for them. Well you may be willing to pay once, but how about twice? Maybe three or four times? Breast implants do not last forever and there’s no guarantee how long they will last. If they are in good shape and the surgeon didn’t make any mistakes, such as underfilling the implant, then they generally last 8-10 years. However they can leak or burst at any time, from immediately after surgery to two or five years later. There are no guarantees. Not only will you have to pay for replacing or removing them but you will also have to endure the painful recovery from surgery-again.

Depending on whether you have your implants placed below or above your pectoral (chest) muscle will dictate the severity of your pain. Obviously under the muscle will be more painful and takes a lot longer to recover. However they’re both surgeries and as such cause a lot of pain, swelling, numbness and discomfort. There is a 15 percent chance of permanently losing all sensation in your nipple. Your breasts can also become extremely sensitive or numb. You could also develop an infection and need to remove the implants if it cannot be healed through antibiotics.

There is the risk of capsular contracture. This is when scar tissue hardens around the implant, making your breast feel tight and hard. A hematoma (pocket of blood) or seroma (pocket of watery blood) can occur around the implant or the incision. It requires surgical draining and can possibly lead to an infection. It will leave a scar.

All surgery leaves behind a scar from the incision. The severity will be dictated by your skin type and also where the incision was placed. The possible places are below the breast, in your armpits, belly button or areola.

There is also a chance of displacement. This can happen at any time. If it’s a slight displacement it’s not as noticeable, but if it moves a lot a surgeon will have to move it back to the right place on your chest. This is more common with larger implants.

It’s a possibility that necrosis might set into some of the tissue. This is dead tissue around the implant which can prevent healing. It requires surgery and removal of the implant.

Another possible side affect is Galactorrhea, where your breasts spontaneously produce and leak breast milk. It can stop on its own or with medication, but you also might have to remove the implants.

Breast implants do inhibit the reading of mammograms. If the implant is placed below the pectoral muscle the mammogram can show approximately 90% of tissue. If it’s placed above the muscle then about %75 percent will be visible.

The FDA reported that out of 344 women, 69% of them had experienced at least one ruptured implant. When implants are removed there are visible changes to the natural breast tissue, such as severe sagging, drooping, and other issues related to stretching the skin. They cannot be fixed.

Some of these risks may sound scary but it’s important to weigh all of the risks to an elective surgery. It’s also just as vital to check out your surgeon’s credentials and reputation and to ask him questions. Legally doctors must tell you all of the risks associated with any medical procedure. However you should consider doing your own research as well because it’s your life in their hands. While some of the more dire risks associated with breast implant surgery are rare, there are some very real and painful situations that can arise. You might just find yourself with a pair of very high maintenance breasts. Arm yourself with knowledge and then ask, “Do I really want Tit…for that?”

While success and failure are part of the parcel, you will need to exercise caution, especially with breast augmentation and enhancement surgery
being the most risky part of all as there have been reports of cases gone horribly wrong.

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