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Implants Bottoming Out

After undergoing breast augmentation, many women enjoy their beautiful new breasts. However, a small number of patients may experience bothersome complications after their procedure. Bottoming out can occur when one or both implants slip below the crease where they were initially placed, which can make the breasts appear unbalanced and unattractive.

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What Is Bottoming Out?

Bottoming out occurs when the implants slide below the lower part of your breasts, causing them to settle too low on the chest. This can happen gradually over time or right after your breast augmentation surgery. It is more likely to occur in women whose breast implants are too large in proportion to their natural breast tissue, but it can also happen when there is surgical over-dissection of the breast pocket or disruption of supportive structures at the bottom of your breasts. Bottoming out is often a result of the following factors:

  • Gravity
  • Weight fluctuations
  • Pregnancy
  • Poor bra support
  • Aging
  • Trauma  

Identifying the Problem  

There are many ways to determine if your implants are bottoming out. When implants start moving downward, you may notice your nipples begin to turn slightly upward. The nipple-areolar complex will appear somewhat higher on the breast, causing it to look “too pointy” and unnatural.

Sometimes, bottoming out may cause your scar to look as though it is moving up on the breast. The fallen implant, or implants, will have dropped below the natural breast fold, which moves the scar up and often creates a new fold on the chest. Other ways to know if your implants are bottoming out include:

  • Pain
  • Discomfort
  • Stretching skin
  • Disappearing breast crease
  • Thinning skin under the breasts

How Breast Revision Surgery Can Help

When bottoming out occurs, the best thing to do is contact your surgeon so the issue can be corrected with breast revision surgery. Depending on the amount of correction needed, your implants may need to be replaced or even removed entirely.

During your procedure, Dr. Burnett will perform a capsulorrhaphy to tighten the implant pocket. Capsulorrhaphy includes the removal of excess skin, repositioning the implants higher to restore their shape, and recreating tissue support. Your implants may also need to be exchanged for a smaller size to alleviate stress on weakened breast tissue and produce a more aesthetically pleasing appearance. In more severe cases, the implants will be taken out altogether.

To schedule a consultation, please contact us today!

Stay tuned for part two of this blog, where we will discuss progressive capsular contracture.