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Silicone Vs Saline Breast Implants?

In 20 days, I will be getting a breast lift with implants and I'm indecisive about the type of implant to use - Saline or Silicone?

Doctor Answers 10

You can get good results with either type

Silicone breast implants have a more natural look and feel, with a lower risk of rippling or implant visibility. However, they are only FDA approved in women over the age of 22. In addition, if a silicone implant ruptures, it can be harder to detect.

Saline breast implants contain inert salt-water that can be fully absorbed by the body in the event of implant rupture. They have an increased incidence of rippling, especially in very thin women.

You can get beautiful, natural results with either type of breast implant. In my practice, most women prefer silicone implants, but this is a personal decision.


New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

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Both saline and silicone implants are good products

In my practice, which is virtually 100% breast surgery, I have found that there is no implant to be used in all women. There has to be a common sense approach to size AND filler material.

Both implants are deemed safe, and in my practice, a more natural result is obtained with silicone implants.

Having said this there, are thousands of women who have had augmentation with saline implants who are VERY satisfied. The decision is ultimately yours once you have been properly educated as to what your options are by your plastic surgeon.

Dr Edwards

Silicone gel implants and saline implants variables

The decision between silicone gel implants and saline implants is a difficult one because there are so many variables to consider. You need to determine with priority of these variables.

Some include risk of rupture, risk of capsular contracture or hardness, naturalness of feel, presence of ripples, risk of future surgeries, fear of unknown rupture.

In general, if silicone implants didn't have a more natural feel to them, they would probably not be around. The naturalness of your breast will be predominantly determined by the relative amount of natural breast tissue. For example, if you put a tiny implant into a large breast, it probably doesn't matter what you use. Your breast will feel natural. If you put a large implant into a small breast, it will probably feel like the type of implant you use. You can use that as a gauge to determine whether or not it wil be beneficial to go to a silicone implant.

If you need a lift because you have thin, stretched out, and limited breast tissue, chances are you will get a more natural result with the silicone gel and will need to balance this benefit against the risks of capsular contracture and rupture.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

I would definitely use textured silicone gel implants under your breast and not your muscle.

 Over the years I have found that the best results with the most natural and long lasting results are with textured silicone gel breast implants under the breast when implants are placed in conjunction with a breast lift. While a little more expensive the results are much better in my hands. 

Carl W. "Rick" Lentz III, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Silicone or Saline Breast Implant Type

It usuallly takes me 45 minutes to go over the pluses and minuses of saline vs. silicone breast implants with patients.

Briefly, silicone implants feel more realistic, have less rippling but there are lingering concerns about what happens if the silicone gel implants rupture, so the FDA requires monitoring by MRI after they are placed. This is not required with saline implants.

Patients should read as much as they can on reputable websites, talk with their doctors, but ultimately, they must make the choice themselves. For what it is worth, women who have had both silicone and saline breast implants almost universally prefer the silicone.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 106 reviews

Silicone implants could yield more natural results

Silicone Gel implants will yield a more natural result in general. If you are older than 22 years old, silicone implants will be a valid option for you.

Saline implants will still give you a good result, but there is increased risk of rippling, especially if you have little breast tissue.

Hisham Seify, MD, PhD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

No Significant Difference between saline or silicone breast implants

The reason to shose one over the other should not be based on the ruture rate. Although not exactly the same they are close enough to make that a non-issue when it comes to picking the type.

Your choice should be based on the look and feel and your comfort with having silicone or saline in your body.

John P. Stratis, MD
Harrisburg Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Silicone Vs Saline Breast Implants?


 +1 When seeing patients in consultation for breast augmentation, I individualize my recommendations when it comes to the type of breast implant that will most likely achieve the patient's goals, with the least risk of complications.  In order to provide this type of advice, the patient's physical examination  and very careful communication of her goals are necessary. In my practice, I find the use of  computer imaging and goal pictures very helpful. You will find,  that without posting your pictures and your goal pictures, that online consultants will not be able to be of much specific/meaningful help to you.
The type of implant used may  determine the final outcome achieved after breast augmentation surgery, especially if the patient does not have significant covering breast or adipose tissue. For example, some surgeons feel that silicone implants have a more natural look and feel than saline implants because silicone gel has a texture that is similar to breast tissue.
Each patient differs in the amount of breast tissue that they have.  If a patient has enough breast tissue to cover the implant, the final result will be similar when comparing saline implants versus silicone gel implants.  If a patient has very low body fat and/or very little breast tissue, the silicone gel implants may provide a more "natural" result.

On the other hand, saline implants have some advantages over silicone implants. Silicone implant ruptures are harder to detect. When saline implants rupture, they deflate and the results are seen almost immediately. When silicone implants rupture, the breast often looks and feels the same because the silicone gel may leak into surrounding areas of the breast without a visible difference.  Patients may need an MRI to diagnose a silicone gel rupture.   Saline implants are also less expensive than the silicone gel implants.

Other differences involve how the breast implants are filled. Saline implants are filled after they are implanted, so saline implants require a smaller incision than prefilled silicone breast implants.
Generally speaking, patients should be aware that more important than any technical detail (such as type of implant, placement of incisions...) will be their careful selection of plastic surgeon;  I think that this selection will be the most important factor when it comes to the outcome of the procedure performed.
I hope this, and the attached link, helps.

Talk with your surgeon about silicone vs saline

But - I prefer silicone over the muscle. I do not like textured, they don't move while the silicone feels more natural.  It is also more expensive than the saline.

William B. Rosenblatt, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.