Breast Implants FAQs
Written by Medical Quality Manager, Clare , BN (Hons)
Medical Review by Chief Commercial Officer, Dr. Lizzie Tuckey , MBBS, BA
Published: Wednesday, 29 December 2021
What do breast implants feel like?
Modern breast implants are designed to mimic the feel of natural breasts. Silicone gel implants, especially highly-cohesive silicone gel, have a more natural feel than saline implants because the silicone gels can be designed and manufactured to feel like breast tissue, whereas the sterilised saltwater in saline implants can only ever have the texture of water.
Can I breastfeed if I have breast implants?
This is something that you should discuss with your surgeon at your initial consultation. Generally speaking, most patients who have breast implants may still be able to breastfeed afterwards. This is because certain surgical techniques won’t affect the ducts within the breast. Despite this, all surgical procedures come with their risks and there is always the potential for ducts to become damaged.
Should I be concerned about having PIP implants?
It is understandable to be worried if you have PIP implants. These were the implants that were made in France with an unapproved silicone gel which made the implants more prone to leakage and rupture. If you know that you have these implants we would advise you to speak to the clinic where you had the breast implant surgery done and seek advice from your GP. You can also read more about PIP Implants too
Although the implants are more prone to rupture they have not been found to be damaging to general health. Therefore, replacing the PIP implants is often a personal choice made alongside a healthcare professional. If you do choose to keep the implants you should make yourself aware of the symptoms of a rupture. Equally, it is advised that you have an annual check-up with a doctor to ensure you are not suffering from any complications.
Are there any reasons I would not be able to get breast implants?
Your surgeon will not perform breast implant surgery if:
- There is an active infection anywhere in your body
- You have existing cancer or pre-cancer of your breast and have not received adequate treatment for these conditions
- You are currently pregnant or nursing
- You're under 18 years old
- You have a medical condition that would increase the risks of elective surgery
In these cases, surgeons do not recommend breast implant surgery. This is because it may interfere with the treatment of active infection or cancer and the safety of the pregnancy or nursing. These factors may also affect the healing process after the surgery.
Although unlikely, there may be other factors preventing you from getting breast implants. If you have any outstanding questions about your eligibility for a breast augmentation procedure, you should speak with a surgeon and explain your situation.
Will my implants have to be replaced if I'm unhappy with the shape?
Some women will not want to change the size of their breasts and may simply be unhappy with the shape or symmetry. As a result, replacement implants may not be needed. There are other surgical options available such as a breast uplift procedure. It is advised that you are clear with your surgeon about what you are hoping to achieve. Your surgeon can then provide you with advice as to whether new implants are needed or if other treatment options are possible.
Is there a certain amount of time that I have to wait before having my breast implants replaced?
Sometimes patients may be slightly unhappy with the results of implant surgery soon after the operation. This is because it takes time for the breast tissue to settle and the bruising and swelling to go down. It can take up to six months before you will be able to see the final results. Therefore, it is recommended that you wait at least six months after having implant surgery before making decisions about having a breast implant replacement procedure for cosmetic reasons.
It is also recommended that you get your implants checked by a specialist at least every 8-10 years, in case your implants do need replacing.