When most people think about breast implants, they think about young 20-somethings looking to enhance their appearance. More and more, however, women over the age of 40 are deciding to undergo breast augmentation. And although breast augmentation comes with potential complications at any age, women who are over 40 typically have a different set of concerns than their younger counterparts.
Mammograms aren’t particularly pleasant for anybody, but women who have breast implants often worry about how it will affect the procedure. Because breast implants are typically placed underneath the chest muscles, the breast glands are separated from the implants. If you do have breast implants, you should definitely tell your technician ahead of time so that they can properly take images around them. But generally speaking, breast implants don’t interfere with mammograms.
Although implants have different fillers—saline or silicone—all breast implants have an outer shell that encases the filler substance. Most outer shells keep their structural integrity very well for the first ten years or so, but shells are more likely to leak after that point. But even though the implant may become weaker over time, outright ruptures are incredibly rare, even under the strain of a mammogram.
Older women often undergo breast augmentation surgery as a way to counteract the natural signs of aging, such as sagging or a loss of volume in the breasts. Unfortunately though, for older women, a simple augmentation may not be enough to give them the appearance that they want. In some cases, women over 40 have an excess amount of skin in the breast area and a breast lift may need to be done as well.
For many women over 40, their days of breastfeeding are in the past, but there are still numerous women out there who have children well into their 40s. And for those women, there’s good news, since breast implants do not typically interfere with breastfeeding. While a small minority of women have difficulty breastfeeding following breast augmentation surgery, the risk is fairly minimal.
Cosmetic surgery is continuing to gain in popularity across the board, but lately it’s become especially popular for the over-40 crowd. If you’re thinking of undergoing breast augmentation, be sure and check with your doctor about the potential risks, regardless of your age.
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