As far back as the early 1990s, leading plastic surgeons were researching the explantation of breast implants and the best way to manage the resulting empty skin pockets.

Hagerty and Scioscia included this comment in the abstract of their article describing a technique for Internal Mastopexy published in 1996. “Controversy over the theoretical complications from silicone gel breast prostheses has led many patients to pursue explantation or removal of the implants. Consequently, the breast is often misshapen. An internal mastopexy can be performed in conjunction with explantation, requiring little additional operative time and no additional scars. Although limited by tissue availability, the procedure can minimize ptosis and improve projection.1

While speaking with our Dr. Craigie this week, I asked him a few questions for clarification that I thought might be of interest to women researching options for explant.

  • Is the Internal Mastopexy technique available to all women who are undergoing explantation?

Yes, most women can have this performed at the same time as their explant surgery.

  • What are the benefits of having that procedure done at the same time?

The obvious advantage is there is only one operative and anesthesia session. In addition, Internal mastopexy can help decrease the incidence of seroma formation within the empty space left by removing the implant.

  • Does it add much to the cost of the en bloc explantation?

That term, En Bloc, has been applied to the technique of total capsulectomy and implant removal as one piece which takes more time and skill than simple implant removal. It makes the procedure last longer. Internal Mastopexy is an additional surgeon fee of $2000.00 and one hour each of anesthesia and operating room time.

  • Can I just have the en bloc explant done without a breast lift/mastopexy? Yes, you can, and many women will choose that option to save costs.
  • What is the average cost of en bloc explant with and without the internal mastopexy?

It’ll be different according to what part of the USA you choose to have your surgery in but in our practice, the cost ranges from $8,495.00 to $11,245.00. That cost includes all pre-op and post-op care, surgeon fees, anesthesiologist fees, hospital operating room fees, and a CosmetAssure policy to cover you during your procedure and post-operative period. The only other costs you might have would be pre- and post-operative medications and pathology fees for the tissue and implant removed to be examined.

Hope this information is valuable to some of you who have had breast implants placed for aesthetic reasons and have now decided you would like to explant. Let us know if we can answer any questions you have. Simply send questions through any of our Ask the Doctor links and we’ll get your answers and respond to you!

Gail Lanter, CPC
CNBR Patient Advocate
Financing available through

1Internal Mastopexy Following Explantation, Scioscia, Paul J. M.D.; Hagerty, Richard C. M.D. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery 97(5):p 1014-1019, April 1996.