Choosing the Right Breast Implant
Only you can decide the shape and size of breast implants that makes you feel most comfortable. Some women like a larger, fuller look, while others want to keep their breasts looking more natural and subdued. Choosing the right breast implant may also depend on your age, shape, size and whether you have current implants to be exchanged.
The first question any patient will have revolves around the size of the implant. After all, breast volume is typically the main concern when patients consider an augmentation. But the decision isn’t easy. There are a number of size options. What is too big? What is too small? It’s very difficult to know what size breasts will look good on your frame. Volume is measured in cc or milliliters and Dr. Szymanski can discuss approximately how that translates to breast cup.
Along with the size, the diameter of the implant should be considered. Wider implants will sit flatter on the chest, while narrower implants will push the breast tissue outward and forward. Again, the diameter of the implant and ultimately how it shapes the breast tissue is something you can discuss with Dr. Szymanski to understand exactly what to expect once the implant is placed.
The current size of your breast may also play a part in what implants are best. Small breasts have less natural tissue to work with and as a result, large implants may not be fully covered.
Bear in mind that the larger the implant, the greater the possibility for complications. Dr. Szymanski will work with you to understand the pros and cons of the various sizes of implants available.
Breast implants come in one of two shapes – round or teardrop. Round implants are exactly as they sound and when implanted offer symmetric shaping results. However, round implants affect the upper part of the breast disproportionality, creating a push-up look. Some women may prefer this as it offers a fuller look, albeit less natural.
The teardrop shape mimics the shape of the breast itself with less fullness at the top and more toward the nipple. Teardrop implants will not have as dramatic a result as their round counterparts, but will look more natural.
The profile of the implant, whether moderate or high, will also influence the look of the breast. A moderate profile, while more natural, does not offer the dramatic results of a high-profile implant that tends to push breast tissue up and forward for a fuller look.
Silicone versus Saline
Saline breast implants are filled with saltwater after the empty shell is placed in the breast. Silicone breast implants on the other hand are pre-filled to a certain size before placement. In the case of a cosmetic breast augmentation, saline has been approved for use in women 18 and over while silicone has been approved for women 22 and over.
Saline implants tend to feel less natural than silicone, the latter of which mimics breast tissue more closely. However, the shell of the saline implant is made of silicone and helps with that more natural feeling.
The other consideration, before choosing between the two, is rupture. There is always a possibility that the implant ruptures. When the saline implant ruptures, the breast visibly deflates, the saline is absorbed into the body and the silicone shell is usually removed during a subsequent surgery, during which a new implant can be placed. Silicone implant ruptures may not be immediately noticeable, but may eventually lead to breast pain or changes in shape. Here too, the silicone fill and shell must be removed and can be replaced at the same time.
Typically, the choice between these two types of breast implants is purely up to the patient, however, depending on the breast anatomy, Dr. Szymanski may offer one option over the other.
There are several breast implant brands in the US all of which are FDA approved and tested for quality. Some surgeons will have a preference for one brand versus another, but there are only slight differences between the products. Of note, some implant makers offer both saline and silicone while others may only offer silicone – something to discuss with Dr. Szymanski during consultation.
Ultimately which breast and plan to choose is a largely personal decision that will be made with your cosmetic surgeon to ensure the proper size, shape and profile. Contact us for a consultation with Dr. Szymanski.