A leaking silicone breast implant is much harder to detect than a leaking saline breast implant. Whereas loss of volume is easily noticed when a saline implant leaks, one does not see really any volume loss from a leaking silicone implant. Leaking silicone implants are usually noted during mammogram or MRI evaluation of the breasts.
First and foremost, a leaking silicone breast implant will NOT affect your health, no matter what you may have seen or heard in the press or on the Internet. Liquid silicone does NOT drift to other areas of your body and cause medical problems. Once a silicone breast implant shell is ruptured, the silicone stays right where it was originally placed in the breast pocket. Very, very rarely liquid silicone gel can migrate into the armpit. The surrounding breast scar tissue capsule is also broken from trauma at the same time an implant is ruptured. If there is ever a question, an MRI should be performed rather than a mammogram or ultrasound.
Regardless of the safety aspect of ruptured silicone breast implants, it is still a good idea to get them replaced sooner than later. A ruptured implant will lose it shape and form upon rupture and the breasts can look droopier as well as feel mushy.
Revision surgery not only involves removing the breast implant shell, but all of the loose liquid silicone material left in the breast pocket. This can add additional time to the operation. It is important to remove as much liquid silicone as possible to help prevent future formation of scar tissue around any remaining droplets. New implants are usually immediately placed by the revision surgeon at the same time.
Please contact our office if you are from outside the Southern California area for a preliminary telephone conversation with Dr. Moser personally to ascertain if an in-person consultation would be helpful to you.