I think my breast implants are leaking?

I got saline breast implants in 2000. This past year I've noticed they are not the same size anymore. They have reshaped and are not flattering at all. I had another surgeon from my hometown take a look he says there could be a small leak and over time they have deflated. Do implants come with a warranty and how do I fix this?

Implants made by the two major manufacturers in the U.S. (Allergan and Mentor) come with a lifetime warranty. Should the implant ever develop a leak the manufacturer will provide you with a replacement implant. Further if the leak should occur within the first 10 years they will also provide a subsidy towards the cost of having the implant replaced (surgical fees, O.R. and anesthesia costs).

At the time of surgery you should have gotten a card about the size of a credit card which has all your implant information on it. Take that card to the plastic surgeon of your choice and discuss your situation. If an exam confirms a leak then that card will provide your plastic surgeon with the information needed to get a replacement implant.

For the best results seek the consultation of a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. They have a website listing all the certified plastic surgeons. Members of the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery will all be board certified in plastic surgery and have demonstrated an interest and competence in cosmetic plastic surgery as well.

Alexander G. Nein MS, MD
Alexander G. Nein MS, MD
2400 Patterson StNashvilleTN37203US

Alexander G. Nein MS, MD

2400 Patterson Street, Suite 202, Nashville,
TN, 37203, US

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Implants do come with a warranty, but in order to find out just what benefits you have, you first need to know who the manufacturer of your implants are. As a general rule of thumb, implants come with a lifetime replacement, meaning the company will supply a new implant of about the same size and type free. Should you decide to change to a silicone gel implant, then one pays the difference in price. Also, there may be available some financial coverage to the cost of the procedure to replace, but that general expires after 10 years. The only way to fix a ruptured or leaking implant is to replace the entire implant.

Roberta L. Gartside MD
Roberta L. Gartside MD
1800 Town Center PkwyRestonVA20190US

Roberta L. Gartside MD

1800 Town Center Parkway, Suite 412, Reston,
VA, 22090, US

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This can be very disconcerting. A leak in saline implants usually results in a very dramatic change in appearance, not just a "reshaping." I did have a patient with a "partial" leak but this is rare. For a patient to have bilateral "small leaks" would even be more rare. To evaluate a leak, you should have an MRI. This will provide an objective basis for your decision process going forward. In terms of your warrantee, you can find the answer by contacting the company that manufactured your original implants. Most implant companies are very helpful in terms of providing a new implant and or helping defer the costs for a true sponteaneous deflation correction given the constraints of the company policy at the time of your implantation, 2000. How you will resolve your concerns going forward will be determined by the answers to the above. Hope this helps.

Michael I. Kulick MD
Michael I. Kulick MD
450 Sutter StSFCA94108US

Michael I. Kulick MD

450 Sutter Street, Suite 2620,
San Francisco, CA, 94108, US

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If your breasts have changed in terms of size or shape, they may be leaking. First, there is no need to worry. This will not cause any harm. However, the implants do need to be replaced. Your implants are approximately 15 years old and would have had to be replaced soon even if you have not had any problems. I recommend that you see a plastic surgeon who likely will discuss your options for treatment with you. I refer to the procedure you will need as a "removal and replacement". The removal options are which incision to use and whether or not to remove just the implants or the implants and the surrounding capsules. The replacement options are which type of implant, in what position (above or below the muscle) and what size. Your implants do have a warranty and it is likely that the implants manufacturer will replace both at no cost depending upon what is found at the time of surgery. Depending on your age and health history, you may need a mammogram prior to proceeding. Your surgeon will discuss all of these details with you.

Scott A. Greenberg MD, FACS
Scott A. Greenberg MD, FACS
1925 Mizell AveWinter ParkFL32792US

Scott A. Greenberg MD, FACS

1925 Mizell Avenue, Suite 303, Winter Park,
FL, 32792, US