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What You Need to Know About Breast Implant Illness and Removal

Breast implant illness or removal

Lately, you may have heard about Breast Implant Illness, or BII for short. Although researchers are working to try to understand the underlying causes of BII symptoms, today, BII is not well understood. Unfortunately, there currently is no test for proving or disproving whether symptoms are related to breast implants. Some women have shown lessened symptoms when the implants are removed. I support any decision a client may make in relation to breast implant removal at my Las Vegas practice.

Breast Implant Illness Symptoms

According to the FDA, Breast Implant Illness can include symptoms such as the following after getting breast implant surgery:

  • Fatigue
  • Memory loss
  • Rash
  • “Brain fog”
  • Joint pain

Please keep in mind that BII is not related to the condition that was recently in the news, Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma, or BIA-ALCL. BIA-ALCL is a rare condition that occurs in a small percentage of women who have a certain type of textured implants. The manufacturer has recalled those textured implants, and the condition is not linked to the round, smooth implants that I prefer to use at my practice. For more information, you can read this blog post about BIA-ALCL.

The Consultation

During your consultation, we’ll talk about your Breast Implant Illness concerns. I will perform a physical exam, and we’ll talk through realistic expectations about the surgery. We will thoroughly review the pros and cons of implant removal surgery.

Surgery Technique

I perform the procedure as outpatient surgery using general anesthesia, and place the incision in the same location used for the original surgery—unless it was performed through the underarm. Here’s a table to show the various types of surgeries that can be performed.

The en bloc capsulectomy technique is preferred, however, if the capsule is too hard or firmly adhered to the chest wall, I may use another technique. A breast lift may also be performed to reshape the breast, if desired. Surgical drains will prevent fluid from building up in the pocket and promote healing.

Recovery

Healing will take several weeks; swelling will continue to decrease during this time. I will give specific instructions regarding the drains and any follow-up care. Your breasts likely won’t return to the shape they were before breast implants. This is why some patients elect to have a breast lift along with removal. We can talk about your questions and concerns regarding breast appearance post-op during your consultation.

If you are concerned about your breast implants or if you feel you may have symptoms of BII, I am happy to discuss your concerns and evaluate your condition. You can request a consultation online, or you can schedule at appointment by calling us at (702) 734-8100 (Las Vegas) or (702) 566-8300 (Henderson).

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