Expander implant removal.

I am having my expander implant and port removed next month, and a permanent silicon one put in. I have had this one in since my mx in jan this year. I havent had such a wonderful time with it really, the muscle above it keeps going tight whenever i use my arm alot. I have also had trouble with the port moving, its sitting right at the side of the implant now, which is also very painful.
I really cant wait the get the new one in now, but i’m worried incase it still hurts as much as this one, and that its just not the reconstructon for me.
Would be really interested if anyone has had this done.
Also how long will i be in hospital, and will i need a drain afterwards.
Thanks Sharon

Hi Sharon

Not sure that I am a role model really. I had a saline implant at the same time as the mx in 2007. I was utterly happy with it. But in August this year it hardened, and was removed (along with the port) and replaced with a silicone one. It seemed great and would have been good but it never healed and the silicone implant was removed three weeks later. Still have an open wound being dressed daily and open.

You didn’t say if you had radio or chemo. The fact that I am not healing is being put down to radiotherapy. I am now facing a skin graft! Think it was just bad luck really.

None of it really hurts but it is a right nuisance!

Good luck with it all.



Hi Sharon, I had my expander exchanged for a silicone implant 4/10/10
due to it shrinking and hardening and being generally uncomfortable.
I was in hospital overnight and was sent home with a drain,it stayed in for seven days,have had minimal pain and have just been ok with paracetamol and brufen. I have to wear a compression bra to help the implant settle, but it is so nice to be rid of the port.the shape is better and although its early days so far so good.


I had an expander implant and port in for 2 years when I had them removed. I have always had some kind of pain with the reconstruction and the expander was really hard.

I thought that when I had this removed and the implant put in it would ease but to be honest it is still the same. It has gone hard and the Breast Nurse said I have capsullutis and it was my body’s way of recognising a foreign body and putting a “shell” around it. I spoke to the surgeon about replacing it again and he said he didn’t think I would be any better off and to leave it.

So for now I have to put up with the pain xxxx

Thanks everyone for your replies, looks like the op is quite straight forward, just hope i dont end up worse off, regarding the pain. Only time will tell.

Sharon x


I would be really intersted to know if the silicone one is softer than the becker?


Hi there

Personally I think it would have been softer, had it not gone wrong for me. That apart, I would go for the silicone one.

Good luck



I was very sorry to hear od your problems, however I have to have my becker replaced as it is leaking!
So I will be going for silicone in the hope that it is softer.
It is just a shame that I get the one faulty implant.


Hallo Crystal

How did it go for you then? Have you had it done yet? I have all my fingers and toes crossed for you. If not yet, then do let me know how it goes. I am sure I was just unlucky and you will do well.



Hi Dilys

I will be having both beckers replaced with silicone, but it will not be until next year. This is because of the strattice that I had, it needs time to encourage my tissue to grow first.

Thanks for asking though


Hi all,

I’ve had an LD flap reconstruction and I’m eagerly awaiting floppy-model breast.

In the meantime, I wonder how you are supposed to match up an essentially square thing with a basically round thing and say they are the same size or not the same size or roughly similar. It’s like an exam in a bad dream where you know that no matter what you say, you can never get the right answer. At what point do you really KNOW that it’s time to have the expandable implant exchanged for the silicone permanent one?

I was asked by the Plastic Surgeon today whether I thought it needed more filling up or not. I have heard that the muscle shrinks a bit and the bionic boob can then end up smaller; and also that you should go a little larger than you would expect, to allow for that ‘natural droop’ they seem so keen on.

In the end, my saline boob was pumped up with 60mls more from the Giant Syringe today. It is fit to burst and really sore! A confusing conversation was had about the matchingness of the two totally different shaped and weighted boobs - apparently I am supposed to say when I think they match, but as the implant is a squarish misshapen brick - with a pointy corner, I asked the consultant’s opinion…surely he is used to deciding this, and knows more about it - more than me??? Well…he laughed, only YOU know if one is bigger or smaller than the other. I couldn’t say which I thought was bigger, because they are so completely different! I was squishing the droopy normal breast up next to the bionic brick while the Surgeon and nurses looked on - and still didn’t really know. Madness!!!

So I just bluffed and said I think the bionic one is smaller - Righto! he breathed a sigh of relief that I had come to a decision - and thus I got it pumped up a bit more, so that it is hard as a stone and ready to pop any day if anybody jabbed me with an elbow - whooooooosh!!! out all that saline would gush!!!

Next time we will plan the exchange operation, getting a jelly wobble silicon implant put in instead…or from what I’m reading here, maybe not so jelly wobble after all…?

Hi Monkeybucket

You’ve taken the words out of my mouth!!! Can’t believe i’ve had an exact replica of your experience. Just how you know is absolutely beyond me! I’m a bit scared mine should have had more saline in - think i’ve been a bit hasty in “agreeing” the left one is bigger - how on earth can you possibly tell! its like measuring apples with oranges. ( no shape pun intended)


Hi Lynn,
I lost my way back to this thread for a while there, but have just read your comment - How funny! It must be the same for lots of us!!! Saying “Yes yes I think that’s fine!” just so we can agree with the surgeon and move on to the next stage, but not really knowing how the outcome will be affected by when we decide to stop inflating! I’ve got the LD muscle over the top of the implant I think, so that makes a difference in how much inflation is needed, but I met a lady in the mammmogram queue who had found her LD muscle was shrinking afterwards and so the new breast became smaller, making a bra filler necessary. A prosthesis of any sort is just another thing I will lose in the wash or in the clothes mountains around here, like I lost the wigs somewhere under the happy chaos of home life - so special bras and special bits that go in bras are something I would have hoped to not need.

The strange thing is, a lot of what I feel is happening is that the surgeon is trying to make things look the best, from the outside looking in, as if we can be summed up in an approving glance - yes they match!

In the end I am less bothered by what the shapes are, than by the fact that the children can’t rest their heads on my chest anymore that side, because I have this hard appendage in the way that is helping me look good but makes cuddling up with my kids difficult! Would I have changed my mind about this type of recon if I had thought that it would be like this? I hope to read the words ‘soft’ and ‘squidgy’ about the LD flap recon with implant, very soon, on a forum here…!