Breast implant replacement

Dr Christian Köhler

Practising Doctor, MBA, Diploma in Health Economics, Certified Consultant and Managing Director

Detailed consultation and precise surgical planning

More than 4,000 successful breast surgeries

Implant replacement specialist

Facts about breast implant replacement

Treatment durationApprox. 2 hours
AnaesthesiaGeneral anaesthetic
Admission1–2 days
Follow-up treatmentWear a special bra for approx. 4 weeks
PresentableAfter approx. 1 week
ExerciseAfter approx. 4 weeks

Over the years, our perception of aesthetics can change and you may find yourself wanting to swap your existing breast implants for a different size. Implants may also need to be replaced if medical issues occur. At the prevention-center in Zurich, Dr Köhler has years of experience inserting and replacing breast implants. He would be happy to hold a personal consultation to discuss potential ways to help you achieve your optimal breast size and shape. Arrange a non-binding consultation today!

Benefits of breast implant replacement at the prevention-center in Zurich

  • More than 18 years’ professional experience
  • Detailed personal consultation
  • High-quality implants
  • Minimally invasive technique with short incisions and absorbable sutures

FAQs about implant replacement

There are many reasons for replacing implants. In most cases, women want to change the size or shape of their breasts – after gaining or losing weight, after a pregnancy, or because their breasts have changed as they grew older. Women’s wishes can differ considerably: while some women may want to replace their existing implants with smaller ones, others may want to add more volume to their breasts. Alternatively, they might want to optimise the shape of their breasts, replacing round implants with tear-shaped implants, or vice versa. In some cases, it might even be necessary to replace implants for medical reasons. This might be because an implant is damaged or because capsular contracture has occurred.

Capsular contracture is the most common complication after breast augmentation with implants. No medical cause has yet been identified for this condition, in which tissue hardens and scarring develops. It can result in breast deformation and cause pain. In order to remedy such complications, it is sometimes necessary to remove the implant causing the issue along with any changed tissue and, if necessary, insert a new implant.

If it is deemed medically necessary to replace an implant, either due to complications or damage to the implant, this must happen promptly to avert the risk of breast deformation. In addition, there is a risk of certain movements becoming painful. Unlike older versions, modern implants generally only need to be replaced after 10 to 15 years.

Before performing an implant replacement, Dr Köhler will hold a detailed personal consultation with you at the prevention-center at Zurich. This will explore the reasons behind your desire for an implant replacement, your wishes and your expectations. Dr Köhler will explain the options open to you, the steps involved in the treatment and the potential risks.

The breast implant replacement itself is performed under general anaesthetic at the prevention-center in Zurich. If possible, Dr Köhler will remove the implant by making an incision along the existing scar in the crease beneath the breast to avoid creating additional scars. This allows him to remove the existing implant. It is then usually necessary to prepare a new implant site based on the shape and size of the new implant. If the new implant is smaller than the previous one, we usually recommend a breast lift to deal with any excess skin. After the surgery, you will have to wear a special bra for a while to support the healing process. Additionally, it is important to follow the aftercare instructions to avoid the risk of complications.

After having a breast implant replaced, you should follow the same guidance as after the original breast augmentation. You should allow yourself and your body to rest for a few days and avoid physical exertion for at least a week. Patients are usually able to resume light work duties after around a week, but you should wait at least 4 weeks before engaging in strenuous physical activities or exercising. During this time, you should wear a special support bra to promote the healing process. Please also follow all other aftercare recommendations in your personal treatment.

No – it is almost always possible to access the implants by making an incision in the same place as in the original breast augmentation. This means that the incision follows the scar in the crease below the breast, meaning that the implant replacement does not create any new scars. It is sometimes necessary, however, to make an additional incision (such as to perform a breast lift after replacing the implant) and, in such cases, it is unfortunately not possible to completely avoid new scars. Dr Köhler will provide further details in your personal pre-treatment consultation at the prevention-center in Zurich.

Just like breast augmentation surgery, an implant replacement also entails the general risks involved in any surgical procedure. This applies in particular to operations performed under general anaesthetic (due to anaesthetic-specific risks). The specific risks related to breast surgery include secondary haemorrhages, wound-healing disorders, infections and capsular contracture. It is also theoretically possible for patients to experience sensory disturbances around the nipples. However, when the operation is performed by a surgeon as experienced as Dr Köhler at the prevention-center in Zurich, the risk of complications is exceptionally low.


Utoquai 31
8008 Zürich
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Kornhausplatz 7
3011 Bern
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9000 St. Gallen
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