The Truth About the Health Risks of Breast Implants

Breast implants are a popular aesthetic procedure that has become increasingly common over the past few years. Women choose to have them for a variety of reasons such as to increase breast size, correct asymmetry, or reconstruct post-cancer. However, with the prevalence of breast implants has come concerns regarding their impact on overall health. So, can breast implants harm your health? In this blog post, we will explore the topic in-depth to help you make a more informed decision about your body.

First, let’s address the most significant health concern surrounding breast implants which is breast implant illness (BII). BII is a collection of symptoms that some women experience after having breast implants. These symptoms include fatigue, brain fog, joint pain, and more. While there is no definitive proof that breast implants cause BII, many women have reported relief after removing their implants. It’s important to note that not all women with implants experience these symptoms, and not all symptoms are necessarily caused by the implants.

Another common concern is that breast implants can increase your risk of autoimmune disease. Again, while there is no conclusive proof that breast implants directly cause autoimmune disease, several studies have found a correlation between the two. One study found that women with breast implants had a higher incidence of a type of arthritis called rheumatoid arthritis. Another study found that women with implants were more likely to develop Sjögren’s syndrome, a disease in which white blood cells attack moisture-producing glands.

When it comes to breast cancer, many women worry that implants could potentially hide breast lumps or make it more difficult to detect cancerous cells. However, studies show that breast implants do not affect mammography accuracy. In fact, mammography provides more detailed images and can be performed more quickly in women with breast implants.

It’s also worth considering the material used in breast implants. The two most common types of implants are silicone and saline. Silicone implants are made of a silicone outer shell filled with silicone gel, while saline implants are filled with sterile saltwater. Several studies have been conducted on the safety of silicone implants and have found no evidence that they are associated with serious health risks. However, ruptures can occur, which can cause complications including infection, scarring, and breast pain.

In conclusion, while there may be some potential health risks associated with breast implants, it’s essential to note that the majority of women with breast implants do not experience any negative side effects. It’s crucial to speak with an experienced and qualified surgeon and perform proper research before undergoing any surgical procedure. Ultimately, the decision to get breast implants is a personal one, and every woman should do what feels right for her body. If you do decide to get implants, it’s important to maintain regular breast implant health checks to ensure the implants are healthy and functioning correctly.


Getting a Breast Implant Check

Getting a Breast Implant Check

If you have undergone or are considering a breast augmentation, you may be looking at getting a breast implant health check the overall health of your implant. 

On average, breast implants should last around 10 years, before we recommend changing or removing them. Whilst the procedure is considered safe, it is important to remember that like all medical procedures, they do carry a risk of complication. To help mitigate the risk of complications, we advise getting a breast implant health check to check every couple of years. 

Dedicated breast health screenings, such as Implant Health use specialist MRI equipment to view the overall health and condition of your implant, and your overall breast health to detect any signs of complication or abnormality. 

What Complications could Arise?

Now, complications arising from breast augmentations are very rare. However, if you suspect something is wrong, you must contact a trained professional who will be able to identify and treat the problem. 

Here are some of the complications that could arise from breast augmentation procedures.

Breast Implant Infection

To your body, breast implants are a foreign material and therefore there is a slight risk they could become infected. If you experience high fever, breast pain, swelling, tenderness, or breast discharge, you should seek the help of a professional to provide treatment. 

Capsular contracture

Following your procedure, a thin layer of scar tissue will form around the surface of the implant, this is known as a capsule and is completely natural. However, in some cases, this capsule may become abnormally thickened and start to cause discomfort. We call this a capsular contracture, which may require surgery to remove the hard capsule of tissue. 

Breast Implant Malposition

This happens when a breast implant moves, causing issues with positioning. It can happen soon after surgery later down the line but symptoms usually manifest as significant and visible changes to the overall shape and positioning. 

Breast Implant Ruptures

This is more common in older implants, but they can occur at any time. Symptoms to look out for include a significant change in breast size or shape, hardness around the implant, lumps, and redness to the skin. 

In some cases, ruptures may not present any symptoms, this is known as a silent rupture. Again, we recommend having your implants checked regularly to avoid any problems.


BIA-ALCL, also known as breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma is an extremely rare blood cancer that forms in the capsule of breast implants. Symptoms include a build-up of fluid or a hard lump developing around the breast. 


If your breast implant ruptures or you have a low-grade infection it can cause fluid to collect around the implant. The most common symptom to look out for is an increase in overall breast size. 

If you have noticed any sudden changes in your breasts following a breast augmentation, getting a breast implant check can help to identify any underlying issues. At Implant Health, any abnormalities, revisions, and required treatment will be discussed with you and dealt with by specialist plastic surgeons, and Doctors.

Here at Implant Health, we strive to empower and support you through your implant journey, so if you have any concerns or would like to book a breast screening contact our team.  


Why do Breast Implants Hurt?

If you have recently undergone breast augmentation or are considering it, you may be wondering how much pain is normal and what you can expect during the healing period.

However, several other reasons may cause your breast implants to hurt including complications. Now, when it comes to complications associated with breast procedures, they are considered rare but if you suspect there is something wrong, we advise you to contact a professional for an examination. 

What does the Healing Process Look like?

Naturally, during your procedure, your surgeon will need to create an incision and stretch the existing breast tissue to place your implant. 

This may result in some post-operative pain, swelling, and tenderness which is completely natural and part of the healing process. Any pain can be controlled using anti-inflammatory medication and should begin to improve within a few weeks of surgery. 

What complications cause pain?

Now, whilst the risk of complication is low certain conditions may cause breast implant pain. 

Capsular contracture

 Capsular contracture occurs when the body’s immune system responds to the presence of a foreign object, such as a breast implant, by forming scar tissue around it. 

In some cases, this scar tissue can become thick and constrict, causing pain and discomfort.

Implant rupture or leakage 

If a breast implant ruptures, it can cause pain and discomfort. This can happen due to trauma, aging of the implant, or a defect in the implant.

Implant displacement

Sometimes, breast implants can shift or move out of place, causing pain and discomfort.

Breast Implant Infection 

Breast implant infections are rare but can occur. If an infection develops, it can cause pain, swelling, redness, and other symptoms.

If you are experiencing persistent pain or discomfort with your breast implants, you must speak with your plastic surgeon. They can perform a physical examination, imaging tests, or other diagnostic tests to determine the cause of your symptoms and recommend the appropriate treatment.

For more information on breast pain, or to book a breast health screening contact Implant Health.


Breast Implant infection

Whilst breast augmentations are safe, like any medical procedure it does carry a complication risk, including breast implant infection, which we will look at in this blog.

What is breast Implant Infection?

In the weeks following your procedure, a bacterial infection could develop around the breast tissue, or the implant itself. However, it is worth noting that the chances of developing an infection in both saline and silicone breast implants are rare (around 1% – 2.5%). 

In some cases, late-onset infections can occur several months to years after the implant is placed, which is why we recommend undergoing regular breast implant screenings to mitigate any complication risk.  

Some studies indicate that the risk may be slightly higher following implant-based reconstructions after mastectomy, but this is something that will be discussed with you in detail before your procedure.

Breast Implant Infection Symptoms

The symptoms of breast implant infection can vary from person to person, but below are some of the things you should look out for:

  • High fever
  • Pain in the breast
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Discharge from the wound

Breast implant infections should be taken seriously and early consultation with your surgeon is recommended. 

Sometimes, in cases where antibiotics do not work to clear the infection your surgeon may recommend the removal of the breast implant until the infection subsides.. During removal, your surgeon may also remove the implant capsule.

How soon do Breast Implant Infections Heal?

If you are being treated with antibiotics, your symptoms should start to resolve within one week, but you are required to follow your surgeon’s advice and complete the course.

If your surgeon recommends you have the implant removed, this will be booked in as a separate surgery and the aftercare may be different to your original breast implant surgery. 

How can Breast Screenings help?

The average lifespan of any breast implant is around 10 years, after which time it should be replaced or removed. Following your augmentation, we recommend you book regular screenings to monitor the overall health of your implants. 

At Implant Health, we arrange individualised assessments, including MRI scans with our team of specialist surgeons and radiologists. During the screenings, we monitor how your implant has changed over time, and detect any issues, allowing us to recommend a suitable treatment, or refer you to a specialist. 

For more information on breast implant infections, or to book a screening contact our team at Implant Health.