Are you considering breast augmentation surgery?
One of the most common topics of discussion during a consultation with a Boston breast augmentation surgeon about breast augmentation is the choice of an implant shape.
People come in all shapes and sizes, so breast implants come in different shapes and sizes too.
At the moment my patients have an option of a round or a shaped (tear drop) implant.
While both implants do the job of increasing breast size very well, there are some significant differences between the two.
The round-shaped breast implant is the most popular breast implant design and it is the most popular choice for women who undergo breast augmentation surgery in the United States.
For a very long time now, the round implants have been considered the “gold standard” of breast augmentation and with good reason.
They enhance the natural shape of the breast and move along with the breast tissue simulating the natural breast behavior.
Round implants come in many different sizes and profiles (how much they push the natural breast forward) and, thus, allow for flexibility and customization to fit any patient body size and shape.
Shaped implants are a much more recent development.
In 2012, silicone gel breast implants in teardrop shapes first became available to patients here in the United States.
These teardrop-shaped implants have been popular with women outside of the United States for a number of years.
They were originally designed with post-mastectomy reconstruction in mind and to this day are used mostly for that purpose.
However, several manufacturers have started to produce such implants meant for cosmetic breast surgery.
It is thought that such implants can enhance the upper part of the breast somewhat better than the round ones.
Sometimes referred to as “gummy-bear” or “form-stable” breast implants, teardrop-shaped implants are designed to hold their shape over time, so they use a silicone gel that is somewhat denser than the silicone used in round breast implants.
While these shaped implants have a definite place in cosmetic breast surgery, we consider them slightly less versatile than the round ones and usually reserve their use to a small subset of my patients.
HOW ARE BREAST IMPLANTS MADE?
All breast implants that are used today in augmentation procedures in the United States are manufactured from either saline or from silicone.
Silicone is a plastic gel, and silicone implants are silicone shells that are filled with silicone plastic gel.
Saline implants also use shells made from silicone, but their shells are filled instead with saline, which is sterilized salt water.
If a saline implant ruptures for any reason after a breast implant procedure, because saline is merely salt water, the saline is absorbed naturally by the body with no physical or medical complications.
A ruptured silicone implant, however, does not get absorbed into the body.
While silicone will likely remain within the shall and cause no issues, it is better to have a ruptured silicone implant replaced.
The choice of your breast implant is an important part of your cosmetic breast surgery and should be addressed during your pre-operative consultation.
Do not hesitate to ask your plastic surgeon questions about your implant choices, until you are satisfied with the answers and can make a fully informed decision.
It is also important to remember that every surgery carries some degree of risk.
It is impossible to eliminate completely all surgical risk, but you can reduce the risks by choosing only a board-certified cosmetic surgeon who has years of experience performing these surgeries and plenty of former patients who are happy with their results.
Make sure you discuss all the potential complications with your surgeon, and if there is anything you do not understand, do not hesitate to ask for more explanations.
When you leave your consultation there should be no doubt in your mind that all the issues important to you have been addressed fully.
WHAT SHOULD YOU LOOK FOR WHEN YOU CHOOSE A COSMETIC SURGEON?
The results of breast augmentation surgery, of course, can vary among individuals, but according to the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, “Excellent results can be achieved with either type of implant.”
Knowing the basics about the different shapes of available breast implants, of course, is only the first step toward achieving the look you want.
If you are considering a breast implant procedure in the New England region, you really must have a consultation with an experienced Boston cosmetic surgeon who deals with these implants every day and routinely performs breast implant procedures.
Make certain that your cosmetic surgeon is board-certified, has considerable experience with the exact type surgery you choose, and is someone that you personally like and trust.