Silicone Injection Removal

Latest update: July 14, 2024
Medically reviewed by: Jordan Frey, MD


Silicone injections are sometimes used to enhance a patient's face, lips, breasts or butt. These are not FDA-approved procedures. They come with a list of risks and complications such as chronic pain, inflammation and tissue degeneration. The body recognizes silicone as a foreign substance in these cases and rejects it. Scar tissues are then formed around the silicone drops and create hard lumps and bumps.

Unfortunately, silicone is a permanent substance that will not dissolve over time, so surgical removal is required. 

This procedure is very challenging and will require a board-certified surgeon.

Patients need to seek treatment as early as possible. The longer silicone stays in the body; the more complicated the removal will be. The surgeon will first inject the affected sites with corticosteroids. This will help to reduce inflammation. If that does not work, the patient will have to undergo a surgical procedure.

There are two main techniques used to remove silicone. One is liposuction which will suck out accumulated masses of silicone. However, if the substance has migrated throughout the body, excisions are better options.

Unfortunately, it is very challenging to remove all silicone in many cases. 

Many times follow-up surgical procedures may be needed in the future. Before the surgery, patients will need an MRI scan. This will help to locate the areas where the silicone has settled in the body and guide the surgeon on where to create the incisions. The procedure can either be done under general anesthetic or sedation.

The removal technique depends on the extent of the complication. Still, surgeons usually make an incision at the affected area and carefully remove the substance. 

Common side effects after the surgery are bruising and swelling. Patients may experience pain that can be alleviated with prescription pain medication and a compression garment. The recovery period can be quite extensive and patients should avoid exercise. In some severe cases, doctors may not even perform the surgery as the risks of silicone removal are higher than the advantages.
Operation Time
depends on treatment
Inpatient Period
Number of Appointments
depends on treatment
Recovery Period
depends on treatment


Dr. David Stoker performs a procedure to remove silicone from the lips of a patient. He goes over the reasons that the procedure is necessary and explains the procedure. The video also includes footage of the after-effects of the procedure and an interview with the patient.

Silicone Injection Removal & Fixing Bumps | Washington DC

Dr. Tina Alster, from the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery, corrects the effects of a silicone injection on a patient's face. She explains the dangers of using unapproved materials in procedures. The video shows the procedure while Dr. Alster talks through the steps.