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Want to Go Bigger or Smaller? Maybe You Need a Breast Implant Exchange

At Restora Austin Plastic Surgery Centre, we’re often asked about breast implant revision procedures for a variety of reasons. If you’re considering changing your implant size, we’ll be happy to help you explore the options.

Current breast implant manufacturers offer lifetime warranties related to deflation. However, implants aren’t guaranteed to last forever. If you’ve had a breast augmentation, you don’t necessarily need to exchange your implants after 10 years, but you might choose to when the size you have no longer suits you.

Read on to learn how breast implant exchange can change your cup size or enhance your bust in other ways.

Reasons to Undergo an Implant Exchange Surgery:

Size–  After pregnancy, over time, or once someone has adjusted to their breast implant size, some will choose to change it. The exchange can go either way— bigger or smaller. Your lifestyle, clothing choices, or physical activity might influence your decision to change your breast implants and breast size.

Newer Implant models– The newest 5th generation cohesive silicone gel implants are popular for many reasons. Not only are they incredibly resistant and well made, but they may resist rippling and provide greater peace of mind for a patient who had an older model of implant inserted years ago.

Deflation– In rare cases—more often with saline implants—leaks and deflation may occur over time.

Wrinkling & rippling– Women who have thin breast skin and tissue are more likely to see rippling around their implants. Saline implants tend to present this issue more often, so many people choose to exchange them for cohesive silicone gel implants.

Capsular contracture– In rare cases, scar tissue can form a thick, constricting pocket around breast implants. This tissue is removed through a capsulectomy, and then new breast implants can be inserted.

Asymmetry– Natural breast volume may change over time, and skin elasticity fades with age. After breastfeeding, or due to genetics, many women have one breast larger or positioned differently than the other. Placing implants of different volumes or projections can carefully counter the asymmetry.

Submuscular Or Subpectoral Breast Implant Placement

Your skin and existing breast tissue, along with lifestyle and fitness, may affect the choice to place implants over or under the muscle.


  • The implant is placed under the pectoralis major muscle and glandular breast tissue.


  • The implant is placed under the glandular breast tissue but on top of the pectoral muscle

Dr. Reid and Dr. Gordon base their recommendations for implant placement on years of experience and clinical data.

Because the submuscular placement of implants tends to have a lower incidence of capsular contracture this is often the preferred choice. Additionally, the extra layer of “camouflage” that chest muscles provide helps smooth the upper breast pole into a natural contour.

Less often, implants are placed above the muscle. For instance, bodybuilders with strong upper bodies have pectoral muscles that can forcefully press on implants. For this reason, they may choose the subglandular placement.

Breast Implant Exchange Can Allow You to Change Your Size

During your exchange surgery, your surgeon will usually access the implant pockets through the original incision route. Your old implants will be removed, and new ones inserted.

One of the benefits patients enjoy when changing implant size is that swelling and discomfort are typically far less extensive than after the first surgery because the same pocket is used and minimal tissue trauma results.

If your new implants are significantly different in size, your implant pockets may need to be made smaller or larger to accommodate them. When downsizing to a much smaller implant, a breast lift procedure may be recommended. That’s because the skin doesn’t always bounce back after being stretched, and you may experience unwanted sagging.

What Is Recovery Like After Breast Implant Exchange?

Recovery is usually faster for implant exchanges, but if you are moving implants to the subpectoral placement, expect to feel some tightness and muscle soreness while healing.

Recovery is unique to everyone. Our team will be in touch with you in the days and weeks after surgery to answer questions and ensure you’re recovering comfortably.

Schedule Your Consultation at Restora

Dr. Ashley Gordon understands women’s bodies, what makes them feel confident, and how an expert breast enhancement can impact her life. Dr. Reid and Dr. Gordon each have extensive experience and passion for helping people reveal their best selves through cosmetic surgery.

You’re invited to schedule a consultation and discuss your aesthetic goals. We’ll ensure you understand the pros and cons of your chosen procedure and experience the difference our personalized approach makes. Call 512-371-8817 or write to us today.

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