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Not All Breast Implants Are Equal: A 13-Year Review of Implant Longevity and Reasons for Explantation

Van Slyke, Aaron C., M.D., M.Sc.; Carr, Michael, B.Sc.; Carr, Nicholas J., M.D.

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: September 2018 - Volume 142 - Issue 3 - p 281e-289e
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000004678
Cosmetic: Original Articles

Background: Augmentation mammaplasty is the most common aesthetic procedure. Textured implants control implant position and have improved capsular contracture rates; however, the impact of texturing on longevity and clinical findings at explantation is unclear.

Methods: All cases of explantation between January of 2005 and April of 2017 from an aesthetic practice were reviewed retrospectively. Patient demographics, implant characteristics, time to explantation, and clinical presentation and intraoperative findings at explantation were analyzed.

Results: Five hundred thirty-nine breast implants were explanted during the study period: 249 saline, 147 smooth gel, 123 Biocell, and 20 other nonaggressively textured breast implants. Average time from placement to explantation was 7.5, 5.6, 4.9, and 4.0 years for saline, other textured, smooth gel, and Biocell implants, respectively (p = 3.25e-08). The percentage of implants removed associated with implant performance failure was 50.3, 57.4, 75.0, and 85.4 percent for smooth gel, saline, other textured, and Biocell implants, respectively (p = 7.25e-09). In addition, 21.1 percent of Biocell implants versus 1.4 percent of all other implants presented with pain (p = 2.71e-15). Forty-five Biocell implants had double capsules; this phenomenon was not observed with any other implant type (p = 5.85e-37). Seven Biocell implants had late seromas, compared to three late seromas with any other implant type (p = 0.0013).

Conclusions: Here, the authors provide evidence that Biocell implants have the shortest time to explantation and the highest proportion of implants associated with implant performance failure. This information should complement the informed consent process when selecting an appropriate implant.

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

From the Division of Plastic Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of British Columbia.

Received for publication September 15, 2017; accepted March 21, 2018.

Presented at the University of British Columbia Division of Plastic Surgery Research Day 2017, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 2017; and Plastic Surgery The Meeting 2017, Annual Meeting of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, in Orlando, Florida, October 6 through 10, 2017. Presentation was given on October 7, 2017.

Disclosure:None of the authors has a financial interest in any of the products, devices, or drugs mentioned in this article.

Aaron C. Van Slyke, M.D., M.Sc., Division of Plastic Surgery, Burn and Trauma Unit, University of British Columbia and Vancouver General Hospital, Second Floor, JPP 899 West 12th Avenue, Vancouver, British Columbia V5Z 1M9, Canada,

Copyright © 2018 by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons