There are many reasons why women opt to have their breast implants removed through a common procedure called explantation. While some of our patients choose to exchange their old implants for new ones, others desire volume restoration through Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat (SIEF). SIEF allows our plastic surgeon, Mark Pinsky, MD, to extract fat from a region of the patient’s body and transplant it into the breast tissue to make cosmetic changes immediately after breast implant removal. The fat transferred to the breasts helps to maintain breast fullness and shape. Dr. Pinsky is renowned for his expertise in breast revision surgeries and specializes in using the latest techniques, like SIEF, to create natural-looking results for women who no longer want breast implants.
If you are interested in learning more about Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat (SIEF) and other breast revision surgery options, we welcome you to contact us at Pinsky Plastic Surgery to schedule a consultation.
What is Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat?
Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat, or SIEF, is a breast revision surgery in which breast implants are removed and then immediately replaced with the patient’s own fat. The fat transfer allows the breasts to maintain volume and shape without the need for new breast implants.
What are the Benefits of Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat (SIEF)?
After breast augmentation, the breast skin may stretch in order to accommodate the size and shape of the implants. If the patient chooses to remove the implants in the future, breast volume loss and changes in breast shape may be noticeable. If the breast skin is still elastic it may tighten naturally after implant removal; however, overly stretched or aging breast skin may appear depleted. Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat (SIEF) is an innovative technique that Dr. Pinsky uses to help patients who no longer want their breast implants, but want to prevent the breasts from sagging after explantation. The SIEF procedure can:
- Be performed in combination with a breast lift
- Correct aesthetic abnormalities caused by breast implant complications
- Restore breast volume and shape with natural-looking results
- Create breasts that are soft and more symmetrical
As an added benefit, fat collection for transplantation is achieved with liposuction techniques, which create a more slender appearance in areas where fat is removed. Most commonly, liposuction is performed in the abdominal region, flanks, thighs, or buttocks to obtain an adequate volume of fat to complete the SIEF procedure.
Who is a Candidate for Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat?
Any woman who is in good health and has a sufficient amount of fat to complete the SIEF procedure may be a candidate for this technique. If you are considering removal of your breast implants and want to find out if SIEF is an option for you, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Pinsky. During your appointment, he will thoroughly examine your breasts, assess the condition of your health, and discuss the reasons and goals you have for the procedure. He will also evaluate how much fat can be liposuctioned from your body to accomplish the degree of augmentation you desire after implant removal. Finally, Dr. Pinsky will present you with the best surgical options for removing your implants and achieving the best results.
The SIEF Procedure
During surgery, the breast implants are removed from the body, the intracapsular spaces which held the breast implants are cleansed, and purified fat liposuctioned from the body is strategically re-injected into the breast tissue. Fat grafts are added until the desired shape and size has been achieved. Depending on the unique challenges your procedure may pose, Dr. Pinsky may vary his approach as needed to create an optimal outcome.
Recovery after Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat
Your recovery after SIEF will depend upon the unique details of your surgery; however, you should expect some degree of post-surgical tenderness, bruising, and/or swelling. In addition to your breasts, the areas of your body treated with liposuction will be recovering as well, and temporary bruising and/or swelling is common in the first few days. Compression garments will be required to promote proper healing where fat was removed, and Dr. Pinsky will advise you on how long these garments need to be worn. Recovery after liposuction typically takes about three weeks, but most patients are able to return to work a week after the procedure.
Results of Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat
The majority of patients who undergo SIEF are able to achieve a cup size that is slightly less than their augmented breast size with breast implants, or smaller if desired. For women who experience breast implant complications (i.e. capsular contracture and others that cause cosmetic abnormalities and/or discomfort) prior to SIEF, the natural-looking breast shape and feel they achieve after SIEF is often a tremendous relief and a boost to self-confidence. It is important to note that a certain percentage of the transferred fat is reabsorbed by the body during the healing process; however, patients who desire additional breast volume after the initial procedure may consider undergoing a second round of fat transfers four to six months later. To see SIEF before-and-after photos featuring Dr. Pinsky’s patients, we invite you to visit our photo gallery.
If you want to remove your breast implants and have questions about Simultaneous Implant Exchange with Fat, we welcome you to contact our practice to schedule a consultation with Dr. Pinsky.