Background: Breast implants are known to have a limited lifespan due to potential disruption of the implant shell. But as long as the implant shell remains intact the volumetric effect of the implants persist. Yet while breast implants remain stable the long-term effect of the appearance of the breast changes many years or decades later.
Whether a woman has an implant in or not, the breast tissue and skin envelope changes. Breast tissue may be lost and the skin will develop some sag. This effect is accentuated with pregnancies and weight gain/loss. The presence of implants may delay or blunt these body-related changes but they almost always occur. Over time the natural breast tissue may slide off of the implant as the tissues weaken and the breasts will look much less perky.
With these breast changes women may seek to exchange their breast implants for larger ones to get a breast rejuvenation effect. The question is what size increase is needed to see a visible change.
Case Study: This 44 year-old female had 350cc saline breast implants placed twelve years ago. She had two subsequent children and then lost some weight as she became much more of a fitness enthusiast. While her saline implants remained intact her breasts had developed some sag and she felt they had lost overall size. She wanted new breast implants that produced a dramatic change in implant size and upper pole fullness.
When replacing breast implants for a larger and fuller look, it takes more increased volume than one would think. Of course it depends on what final breast size one wants but anywhere from a 50% to 100% volume increase is needed. That could be anywhere from 150 to 300ccs for most women.
1) As long as breast implants remain intact, they maintain a persistent volume.
2) The tissue around breast implants does change over time through some loss of volume and tissue sag off of the implants.
3) To re-expand saggy breasts with new implants a much larger breast implant size must be chosen than one may think.
Dr. Barry Eppley