Breast implants have become a popular cosmetic surgery choice for women. More than 300,000 women underwent breast augmentation procedures in 2019 alone, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Although generally safe, breast implants can cause complications, and one such complication is breast implant rupture. A breast implant rupture is a serious concern for women with implants, but is it really dangerous? In this blog post, we will take a look at what happens when a breast implant ruptures and examine the risks and dangers involved.
What is a breast implant rupture?
A breast implant rupture occurs when the outer shell of a breast implant tears or develops a hole, causing the filling – either saline or silicone – to leak out. Ruptures can occur for several reasons, including implant malfunction, trauma, or normal wear and tear. A rupture can also occur because of defects in the manufacturing process or due to the use of poor quality materials.
What are the symptoms of a breast implant rupture?
The symptoms of a breast implant rupture can vary from person to person and depend on the type of implant. If you have saline implants, the rupture will be immediately noticeable as your breast will deflate quickly. The saline solution is harmless and can be absorbed naturally by your body. You may also experience some pain in your breast or notice a change in the shape of your breast. If you have silicone implants, you might not be aware of the rupture for some time. Symptoms of a silicone implant rupture may include changes in the shape, size, or firmness of your breast, pain or tenderness in the area, or a change in sensation or numbness in the nipple and breast.
Are there any risks associated with a breast implant rupture?
Yes, there are risks associated with breast implant rupture. If the rupture is left untreated, it can result in serious complications. Saline implants pose no risk as the saline solution can be absorbed by your body with no adverse effects. However, if a silicone implant ruptures, the silicone filling can migrate to other areas of the body, causing problems like breast pain; lump formation; breast cancer; or an autoimmune or inflammatory response, which can result in chronic and severe pain in the affected area, as well as further health complications.
What should you do if you suspect a breast implant rupture?
If you suspect a breast implant rupture, you should visit your doctor immediately. Your doctor will conduct a physical examination and may recommend imaging tests, such as an MRI or ultrasound, to confirm the rupture. If you have a saline implant and your rupture is confirmed, you can have the breast implant removed and replaced. However, if you have a silicone implant, you will need to undergo surgery to remove all of the loose silicone and the implant shell.
Breast implant rupture is a serious concern for women with breast implants. Although saline implant ruptures poses no risk and can be corrected easily, silicone implant rupture can result in serious health complications. If you notice any changes in your breast, such as asymmetry, pain, or a change in texture, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. Routine monitoring (such as annual mammography) can help detect ruptures, and patients are encouraged to regularly see their surgeon for follow-up or for implant replacement if indicated. Remember, being aware and informed is the best way to ensure that you make the right decisions when it comes to breast implants.