There are many breast implants on the market today, which can be overwhelming at times. Here we will break down the basic implant types to give you a better understanding of your options. Each basic implant type offers its set of pros and cons.
During your consultation, we will discuss your implant options and address your anatomy, desired aesthetic appearance or feel, the amount of soft tissue coverage over the implant, and your personal preference. With all of this collected information, we can offer our professional expertise in selecting the best implant for you as this is an extremely individualized process. In this post, we will focus on the basics of each implant type including saline, silicone gel, and highly cohesive silicone gel breast implants. In addition to these basic types of implants, they also come in varying shapes, textures, and profiles, which indicates the implants projection off your chest wall. It is important to understand that implants are not lifelong devices.
Saline implants have a silicone shell, which is filled with sterile saline (salt water) at the time of surgery. Saline implants are usually slightly more firm and have a round overall appearance. As with all implants, depending on the amount of soft tissue coverage of the patient, “rippling” or the implant folds may be visible on the skin surface. In a breast augmentation, this is not usually a major concern because a patient has breast tissue providing coverage over the implant and often the implant is placed under the pectoralis major muscle to mask any implant ripples. If a saline implant ruptures, you will be aware as the implant will flatten and your body will absorb the saline. Typically the incision will be smaller as the implant is inserted without the saline and then filled after implant placement. Also, the exact saline fill amount is customized based on the surgeon’s discretion to optimize symmetry at the time of surgery.
Silicone gel implants come in two basic types, silicone gel, and highly cohesive silicone gel, both of which have a silicone outer shell. Today’s generation of silicone implants are filled with a cohesive silicone gel that maintains its form if ruptured. As a result, a patient may not know if their implant has ruptured. Upon rupture, some patients may report that the breast feels different or tighter. The highly cohesive silicone gel implant, also known as “gummy bear” or “anatomic” implant, has a firmer/stronger silicone gel and thereby has the least amount of ripples associated with this type of implant. Both of these silicone gel implants are excellent choices for women who want a softer or more “natural” look. In the following blogs, we will discuss breast augmentation recovery and what to expect following surgery.
Implant selection can be difficult. Our surgeons at Florida Plastic Surgery Group will help you make an informed decision based on your specific desires and anatomy. Please contact us today to schedule your consultation.