Will my breast implants freeze up in the cold?

With the ground blanketed in snow and the thermometer hovering around 18 degrees Fahrenheit, it seems the right time to consider what happens to breast implants in the cold.

Imagine that a saline implant and a silicone gel implant were just chillin’ on your lawn. At today’s balmy 18 degrees, the saline implant would be frozen like an ice cube. (Outside of the body, a saline implant would freeze at about 28 degrees Fahrenheit.) The silicone gel implant would still be soft; it won’t ice up until the thermometer dips to 170 below zero.

Screen shot 2014-01-03 at 2.36.37 PMWhen implants are part of your body, your core body temperature of 98.6 will keep them warm. One blogger conjectured, “Even if theoretically a girl was like a reptile or something and had no body heat, the freezing point of the material used in the implants would be pretty low.” In other words, you would die of hypothermia – dangerously low body temperature – long before your implants froze.

We wonder if any of the 52 passengers who were stranded for a week on a Russian research ship in the Antarctic had breast implants. If they did, they didn’t need to worry about them freezing.

If you swim in a cold pool or skate at an ice rink, your implants could cool to slightly below your body temperature, and they might feel cool to the touch. Likewise, if you hang out in a hot tub or spend the day sunbathing at the beach, your implants might feel warm to the touch. In general, implants change temperature very slowly, and implants that are placed behind the pectoral muscle are less susceptible to temperature changes.

We don’t agree with the woman on Yahoo who answered the question: Do breast implants freeze up out in the cold? With “yes, which is why girls sneak off to the bathroom immediately after those snowmobiling trips to allow for some thawing time.”  We suspect that the girls just need to go to bathroom – and put on lip gloss.

FYI: According to John Castellani of the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, “The record for the lowest body temperature at which an adult has been known to survive is 56.7 degrees F, which occurred after the person was submerged in cold, icy water for quite some time.”

4 thoughts on “Will my breast implants freeze up in the cold?

  1. My core body temp isn’t doing jack to warm up my silicone implants – I’m reconstructed after mastectomies and the one side is radiation damaged. I feel like I’m walking around with two blocks of ice strapped to my chest. I’m physically uncomfortable except when layered under lots of blankets while sleeping at night or when I have a heating pad against my chest to warm them up for a while. Even in the heat of August when the rest of me is roasting, my chest is cool to the touch. It’s disturbing!

    • So sorry to hear that, Lori. I use predominantly saline implants and perhaps they don’t get as cold as the silicone. Wish there was some solution I could offer.

  2. I also had bilateral mastectomies, and my breast get very cool, plus, because of nerve loss from surgery I really can’t tell they are cold until I feel them. Thank goodness I live where it is warm most of the time, otherwise I would worry about tissue damage from decreased circulation.

  3. My wife has the same issue with regulating body temperature due to the slow rate of change heating or cooling her implants. Is there research that has looked at artificially heating or cooling the implant?

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