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Why is my breast filling with fluid after an implant removal?

Stuart A. Linder, MD
Plastic Surgery

The breast itself should not fill with fluid after implant removal, if an appropriate drainage tube has been placed for 7 days. In order to prevent seroma formation after explantation of breast implants, a JP 10 millimeter drain is placed often through an inframammary incision. The drain will remove the fluid that the body creates in the pocket for the first 7 to 10 days. Once the fluid is less than 24 mL in a 24-hour period, after 7 days, the drains are removed. It is vital that patients who have explantation of implants have a drain placed for at least 7 days in order to prevent seroma formation.

Mohammad Khosravi
Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
The fluid collection after breast implant removal is referred to as Seroma. Based on timing of fluid collection after breast implant removal, it is defined as early or late on-set seroma. In order to avoid seroma formation, your surgeon might place a drain into empty cavity after implant removal. The drain, which is a plastic tube, should be kept in position as long as a considerable amount of fluid is draining on a daily basis. There is a guideline that indicates how much daily fluid drainage would be considered safe to remove drain.

In late on-set seroma, I drain the fluid and always send a sample of the fluid for further analysis in laboratory.

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