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Breast Revision Recovery

Breast Revision Recovery

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When surgery is performed to replace breast implants, the recovery is similar to that of the initial breast augmentation. However, if the breast implants are removed entirely, the recovery is often brief, with minimal discomfort. In most cases, recovery time after breast implant revision is short. Most patients can return to their daily routine, with only moderate discomfort, in a few days. Ultimately, the length of your breast implant revision recovery will depend on the type of surgery performed.

Recovery After Breast Implant Removal

Patients who choose to have their implants removed completely typically experience only mild discomfort after the surgery, which can be controlled with over-the-counter medication. Expected side effects include:

  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Itching

Having a breast lift performed in conjunction with implant removal will lengthen the expected recovery time. Altered sensation around the incision area, such as numbness or tingling is possible, but this should disappear over the following weeks and months.

Recovery After Breast Implant Replacement

Women having breast implant revision surgery to replace their implants can expect their post-operative discomfort and recovery time to be similar to that of their primary breast augmentation. The extent and duration of discomfort depends largely on the size and placement of the implants, and may include:

  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Itching

If larger implants were placed, the skin around the breasts may feel tight as the body adjusts to accommodate the increase in size. It may take several weeks or months for new implants to "settle" into their final position. Altered sensation, such as numbness or tingling, may be present around the incision site, but this should decrease over the following weeks or months.

Tips to Ensure a Healthy Recovery 

Following your surgeon's post-operative guidelines is the best way to ensure a successful recovery from your breast implant revision or replacement surgery. If you have had surgery to replace your implants, your doctor will likely recommend wearing a compression bra to help you heal comfortably.

A compression bra is usually worn for two or more weeks after surgery to:

  • Prevent fluid accumulation
  • Control swelling
  • Keep implants in place during the initial healing period

Patients may wish to take additional steps to control swelling and bruising which include applying a cold compress and sleeping with the torso slightly elevated. In order to minimize any post-operative discomfort, your doctor will be able to provide medication for pain relief.

Although patients are free to resume daily activities within several days, physical strain should be avoided during the initial stages of the healing process, as it may cause the breasts to swell. In fact, during breast implant revision recovery, patients should refrain from moderate to strenuous exercise and heavy lifting for at least six weeks.

Visit the DocShop gallery to view breast augmentation before and after photos.

Photo credit: James P. Wire, MD

Locate a Breast Revision Surgeon through DocShop

If you have decided to pursue breast implant removal or replacement, be sure to find an experienced doctor you can trust. Use DocShop's physician directory to find a surgeon near you who will be happy to educate you about what to expect during your breast implant revision recovery.

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