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What can go Wrong with Breast Implants?

Despite breast augmentation being one of the most popular cosmetic procedures in the UK, many patients are unaware of the risks of choosing to have this cosmetic surgery.

April 6, 2016

For decades, the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure has been breast augmentation. In the last figures released from BAAPS (British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons), there were 8619 recorded breast augmentations in the UK alone, which had decreased around 23% from the previous year. However, despite this decrease, it still appears that a high number of women are choosing surgery in order to improve their appearance.

Following the PIP scandal some years ago, it would be hoped that more women are asking questions about their surgery prior to going under the knife. However there is much more that should be asked, as well as researched, before electing to have an augmentation. Many women aren’t aware of all of the risks and complications of breast surgery, therefore we have listed some of the main issues that can arise after your procedure has taken place.

Capsular contracture

Capsular contracture is the is the medical term used to describe scar tissue forming around breast implants. This will occur in most patients to some degree, however in some cases it can worsen. The effects of this often cause the breasts to harden, leading them to feel and look abnormal. Patients often complain of discomfort and soreness, as the capsule tightens. Those with extreme, relentless pain will have to have further surgery to try and rectify the implant.


Usually caused by a ruptured implant, siliconomas is a condition that is caused when silicone leaks outside of the and spreads into the surrounding breast tissue. This leakage can cause small lumps to develop, known as “siliconomas”, which can be painful to touch. Although it is a rare occurrence, the lumps of silicone can make their their way into the muscle under the breast, into the lymph nodes, or work its way around the nerves to the arms. If this happens, it can be extremely painful and will need to be removed.


All types of breast implants can a risk of rippling, however it is more common with saline and non-cohesive silicone breast implants. It is caused when the solution inside of the implant moves, causing the appearance of wrinkling, folding or creasing on the breasts. This often happens when implants aren’t filled properly, or when they are positions over the chest muscle, rather than underneath it.

Loss of nipple sensation is more commonly associated with breast uplifts, or breast reductions, however they are also prevalent with breast enlargement procedures. According to NHS statistics, approximately one in seven women report either a change or complete loss of sensitivity in their nipples, which can be permanent.

Unfortunately, there are also a number of other conditions that can be caused as a result of your breast implants going wrong. Whilst some of these are unavoidable, others can be caused as a result of poor technique, or surgical negligence.

If you have suffered as a result of your breast surgery and you feel it could have been avoided, you may be eligible to receive cosmetic surgery compensation. For a free no obligation consultation, contact one of our cosmetic surgery solicitors.

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