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Is Breast Implant Surgery Safe?

Choosing to have breast augmentation and reconstruction surgery is an incredibly personal decision. It’s important that you and your surgeon consider all the facts about the benefits and risks associated with breast implants prior to making choices about your breast implant surgery.

Breast implants are FDA-approved and safe and effective for breast reconstruction and augmentation and are chosen by hundreds of thousands of women every year. But as with any medical device and procedure, breast implants and surgery carry a risk of complications which may be higher if you have certain conditions.

Breast Implant Surgery Safety

Are You Eligible for Breast Implant Surgery?

Before you decide to move forward with breast implant surgery you should have a detailed conversation with your doctor to review your medical history.


A contraindication is a condition or circumstance that, if present, means a procedure should not be done because the risk of complication outweighs the benefits. Adequate studies have not been performed to demonstrate the safety of breast implant surgery in women with the following conditions or under these circumstances:

  • Women with active infection anywhere in their bodies
  • Women with existing cancer or pre-cancer of their breast who have not received adequate treatment for those conditions
  • Women who are pregnant or nursing

If you have any of the above conditions or circumstances, breast implant surgery should not be performed at this time. Failure to take into consideration these contraindications may increase the risks involved with surgery and could cause you harm.


If you have any of the following conditions be sure to notify your doctor as the risks of complications may be higher if you have any of these conditions:

  • An autoimmune disease, or family history of autoimmune disease
  • A weakened immune system
  • Planned chemotherapy following breast implant placement
  • Planned radiation therapy to the breast following breast implant placement
  • Conditions that interfere with wound healing and/or blood clotting
  • Reduced blood supply to the breast tissue
  • Clinical diagnosis of depression or other mental health disorders, including body dysmorphic disorder and eating disorders

Caution for Smokers

Smoking can compromise recovery a great deal by causing the blood vessels to constrict, reducing blood flow, and the oxygen it carries, to the surgical area. Your tissues need this blood and oxygen supply to heal properly. When your blood supply is compromised, wound healing will be affected.

That’s why surgeons ask patients to refrain from smoking for one to five weeks prior to and after surgery. It’s important that you ask your surgeon what his or her specific recommendation for you would be.