What Happens if Saline Breast Implant Leaks or Ruptures?
Saline breast implants are capable of rupturing and deflating, which is one of the more notable risks of saline implants. Should a hole or tear develop in the shell of a saline implant, the liquid saline solution will be released and the implant will deflate.
The speed at which deflation occurs will depend on the size of the defect. When the saline solution is released, it will leak into the body where it will be harmless and absorbed over a period of days; it will not cause any irritation, illness or other unwanted effects. The patient (or Dr. Jugenburg) will be able to identify a leaking or ruptured implant due to the loss of size and shape in the affected breast.
Saline breast implant leaks are not common, and for any given patient, having it happen once does not mean that patient will have a higher risk of it happening again.
Rupture and deflation can be caused by a number of different factors, such as physical trauma, general wear and tear, Capsular Contracture (implant hardening), or complications from medical procedures. If a patient believes that her breast may be losing volume, she should arrange to see Dr. Jugenburg as soon as possible.
All patients not in Toronto can contact the clinic by email and send photos of the affected breast to allow Dr. Jugenburg to make an assessment. Should Dr. Jugenburg determine that a breast implant leak or rupture has occurred, he will discuss treatment options with the patient and try to schedule a quick replacement.
Although there is no health risk from the deflation of a saline implant, it is preferable to replace the defective implant before the implant has completely deflated and the breast pocket in which the implant is positioned has collapsed. If caught early, the implant capsule, which is the scar tissue that forms around an implant, will still be in its original shape and size.
However, if the breast pocket is allowed to collapse after an implant has deflated, the implant capsule will shrink and tighten. If this happens, a new space for the replacement implant will need to be created.