Breast augmentation study


Los Angeles Breast Augmentation Study Tracks Women Who Have Experienced Saline Implant Deflation 

While breast implants are durable medical devices and most women who choose breast enlargement in Los Angeles and across the country enjoy their enhanced look for many years, a small number of women experience implant deflation due to trauma, injury, manufacturing defect, or other causes. A new study of patients at Marina Plastic Surgery Associates who had at least one of their saline implants deflate (available at shows that most of these women chose to replace their deflated implants with newer generation silicone gel implants.

The study, presented at the June 2008 joint annual meeting of the California Society of Plastic Surgeons and the Rocky Mountain Association of Plastic Surgeons, sought to uncover the choices women make following breast implant deflation. Surgeons at Marina Plastic Surgery conducted a chart review of Los Angeles and Beverly Hills patients whose breast implants experienced deflation during the period from the 2000 to 2007 - a total of 285 patients.

"Most of the patients, about 55%, in our review chose to replace both of their implants," says Dr. W. Grant Stevens, a board-certified plastic surgeon and founder of Marina Plastic Surgery Associates. "And we uncovered a few other interesting outcomes. Almost 60% of re-implantation patients chose silicone gel implants instead of saline, and slightly over half of these women chose to have a larger implant placed. This suggests that following implant deflation, many women take a step back and reconsider their original implant decisions."

Average patient age in the study was 38.4 years old, though women needing re-implantation ranged in ages from 19 to 75. The average patient who required re-implantation experienced a deflation a little over 4 years after her initial breast surgery, but the actual amount of time for individual women varied considerably and ranged from 3 months to 17 years. A considerable majority of women received financial assistance from their original implant manufacturer for the cost of the re-implantation surgery.

"In addition to focusing on implant choices, we also examined the number of women who chose to have additional procedures performed during their re-implantation, and what types of procedures were performed," added Dr. Stevens. "We found that breast lift, facial procedures, and liposuction were the 3 most common types of surgery performed during a re-implantation procedure. We also discovered that almost one third of the women we saw for re-implantation returned to our practice yet again for additional procedures within the study period."

Additional studies like this one may help make the decision regarding implant type easier for women considering cosmetic breast procedures that require breast implants. It is important to keep in mind that the results here represent only a small sample of women from one Los Angeles breast augmentation practice, so more research is needed to understand how women nationwide address the need to have a deflated implant replaced.

About Marina Plastic Surgery Associate

Marina Plastic Surgery Associates ( offers a high level of cosmetic care for women and men in Los Angeles, as well as patients from around the world who fly in for procedures. The practice has two state-of-the-art office facilities in Marina del Rey and Palos Verdes, California, and offers the most comprehensive menu of medical spa procedures and plastic surgery options in Los Angeles. Plastic surgeon Dr. Grant Stevens is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and is the Medical Director of Marina Plastic Surgery Associate