What is the Sientra Breast Implant?

Doctor Answers 26

Which brand of breast implants is best?

In my opinion Sientra , Natrellle and Mentor breast implants are somewhat  similar in profile, performance and durability.  No single company provides every size I would like to use for my patients, so I use more than one brand. I feel like it is my responsibility to know about all the implants,their sizes, shapes and unique characteristics.

I strongly recommend selecting your surgeon based on training, experience and aesthetic sensibility rather than on the basis of which brand of breast implant they typically use. 

You can give two chefs the same recipe but the outcome may be very different. Take time doing research on your plastic surgeon. Excellent surgical training and lots and lots of consistent photos are a must.

Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Lexus, Mercedes and BMW

There are 3 main breast implant companies in the United States - sort of like Lexus, Mercedes, and BMW.

Sientra has a more cohesive gel (5th generation which is the latest and greatest) which have less rupture and capsular contracture.  Sientra texturing is unique and theoretically prevents bottoming out or lateralization of the implants compared to a smooth device.  Though they are a bit firmer, the tradeoff is likely less rippling.  

All implants have pros and cons and it is important to discuss these with your surgeon.  Sientra does only sell to Board Certified Plastic Surgeons so rest assured, if your surgeon can use them, he or she is not a family practitioner,  ER doctor, dermatologist, ENT, gynecologist or general surgeon who took a weekend course or "cosmetic fellowship".  

What is the Sientra Breast Implant

Sientra is one of three breast implant companies FDA approved in the U.S.

I like round sientra implants because they have a more cohesive gel and we THINK that this could mean less risk of gel bleed and capsule formation, though we don't have any data on this.

I also like sientra implants because of their surface texturing, which also can reduce the risk of capsules when placed over the muscle and we THINK below the muscle as well, though we don't have any data on this last part.

They are a firmer implant, but that means its less likely to ripple. It also means it feels more firm. I like the feel of their implants and I like the size range, though if you are looking for an ultra high profile implant they don't have it.

Their shaped implants are comparable to the other shaped implants on the market, and differ mostly based on their texturing. The allergan textured implants make me a little nervous because they are too firm and the texturing has caused some long term problems in some patients (double capsules, and late seromas). But the mentor textured shaped implants I use regularly for reconstruction.

In conclusion, there are pluses and minuses to each implant, and what's more important is the surgeon. THAT SAID, Sientra only sells implants to Board Certified Plastic Surgeons which I think is F-ing Awesome and should be the case for the other implant companies as well, but they are willing to sell to family doctors, ER doctors, dermatologists, ENTs and anyone else who wants them and takes a weekend course in "cosmetic medicine".

Sientra Breast Implant

Sientra manufactures cohesive gel breast implants. There are two product lines that they are currently promoting:

1) HSC which Sientra claims is the most cohesive round breast implants in the US.
2) HSC+ silicone gel is designed to look and feel like natural breasts. HSC + provides softness without compromising shape retention.

Consult with 3 experienced and expert board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Sientra makes the only highly cohesive round implants on the U.S. market

A: Sientra makes the only highly cohesive round implants on the U.S. market
Sientra, Allergan, and Mentor all make excellent round silicone gel implants. The Allergan and Mentor implants are cohesive, and the Sientra implants are highly cohesive. I have used round silicone gel implants made by all three manufacturers, and all yield good results.
If you are looking specifically for a "gummy bear" implant (highly cohesive), Sientra is the only manufacturer that makes round highly cohesive implants. All three manufacturers make highly cohesive shaped implants.

Ronald Friedman, MD
Plano Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Definition of Sientra Breast Implants

Thank you for your question.  Sientra is a brand of Silicone Gel implants that, along with Mentor and Allergan, are FDA approved for use in the United States.  Sientra is the ONLY brand of implants that requires an implanting surgeon be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons. 

Sientra breast implants

Our office uses Sientra implants, among others, to enhance breast volume. Sientra is a manufacturer of cohesive gel breast implants.  Selection of the type of breast implant depends on breast biometrics and your examination. 


Dr. Karamanoukian 

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Sientra 'Gummy Bear' Breast Implants

The Sientra implant is a 5th generation form-stable implant silicone implant that has been nicknamed the 'gummy bear' due to it's cohesiveness.  I use these implants exclusively in my practice due to the safeguards Sientra had put in place as well as the warranties made to patients and their surgeons.  These implants are available as round, smooth, textured and tear drop-shaped implants and are an excellent choice in virtually any situation in which an implant is required.  

Jeffrey Weinzweig, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Great question.

The implant that you are asking about has a long history of successful use outside of the United States.  They are available in both round, smooth and textured varieties as well as textured shaped styles.  

In March of 2012, Sientra Corporation Silimed brand implants were made available in the US.  Sientra was the first company to obtain approval from the FDA for use of their shaped silicone gel implants.  These implants contain a silicone gel that is more cohesive, and has a slightly firmer feel than traditional smooth round silicone gel implants.  The manufacturer terms the silicone filler "HSC+" which stands for High Strength Cohesive +.  Round implants from this company contain a slightly less stiff and less cohesive implant that is filled with a gel simply called HSC.  We can consider the round implants to represent the "4th Generation" of silicone breast implants and the shaped implant the "5th Generation".

Focusing primarily on the Sientra Shaped HSC+ implants, they do appear to have notable differences from the offerings of other companies:  Allergan 410 and Mentor CPG implants.  These differences relate to variation in surface, filler, and shape options.

The surface texturing of the Sientra HSC+ implants is created by a technique that is different from other manufacturers by avoiding the process of scrubbing, salting or stamping the shell.  These methods of creating a rough surface on the shell (necessary to discourage rotation of these shaped devices) are thought by some to have significant negative effects.

Studies have shown that the differences in the amount and design of the cross-linking of the Silicone molecules comprising the silicone gel in the devices produced by the three silicone implant manufacturers leads to variations in several areas.  This research has indicated that the Sientra shaped implant had the least cohesive gel when compared to the Mentor CPG and Allergan 410 implant.  In the round implant version, the Allergan implant was the least cohesive and the Sientra round implant was the most cohesive.  It is important to understand that cohesiveness does impact the amount of wrinkling and capsular contracture rates of the implant:  lower rates of these events are seen with higher degrees of cohesiveness.  The untoward effect of higher cross-linking and cohesivity is a propensity to gel-fracture and excessive firmness.  Therefore a balance must be reached to achieve a soft, stable breast.  Sientra implants were constructed to do this by reducing the stiffness through less cross-linking, but maintaining the form stability by increasing adherence of the silicone gel to the implant shell.

Currently, Sientra HSC+ implants are available in 3 footprints:  Classic (taller with moderate projection), Round (less tall than the Classic with  high projection), and Oval (least tall with low, moderate, and high projection styles).  The classic base is preferred for women with long chest and low base of the breast.  The oval shape works better in women who want more cleavage with less upper pole fullness and in women with a wide chest and breast width.  Lastly, the round shape does a better job of expanding the lower part of the breast in women who want a smoother upper pole breast-chest transition; in women with a tight lower pole of the breast (constricted breasts), this is the best footprint to select.

Finally, contracture rates and rupture rates appear to be the lowest in these 5th generation shaped implants (from all manufacturers).  This realization has led to Sientra extending this belief in the longevity of the product in the form of their unique C3 capsular contracture warranty.  This provides coverage for two years from the date of the augmentation if the patient develops a Baker Grade III or IV contracture.  The patient is provided a free replacement implant if they develop this problem within this period.

Having attended preceptor training with the foremost US surgical authority in Sientra HSC+ implants, I can honestly say that these implants are truly game-changers.  They represent a quantum leap in technology and advance the art of breast augmentation in ways that US plastic surgeons could only dream of 2 years ago.

Brian K. Brzowski, MD
Ogden Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Sientra Implants - What You Should Know

The Sientra breast implant is made of a high-strength, form-stable, silicone gel, and is similar to other "gummy bear" implants offered by Allergan and Mentor. The company offers a smooth or textured round implant, as well as a variety of anatomically shaped implants (all textured).  This variety, along with their excellent safety and performance record, is why many of us have chosen to add Sientra to our portfolio of breast implant options. Sientra is also the only breast implant manufacturer in the U.S. to offer a warranty program for capsular contracture. If a woman gets primary augmentation with Sientra True Texture implants and develops capsular contracture (Baker grade III or IV) within the first 2 years, the warranty covers implant replacement. The company also offers the best overall breast implant warranty in the industry, which, to me, says that they prioritize safety and quality and stand behind their product. The implants do have an excellent safety record, and some studies indicate that they have a reduced rate of capsular contracture and other complications. These implants have been used in Europe and other parts of the world for more than 30 years, with a remarkable record of safety and satisfaction. Having said all that, there may be another type of implant that is better for your particular physical characteristics and goals. A board-certified plastic surgeon with extensive breast augmentation experience is the best person to help you determine which breast implant is right for you. Good luck!

Andrew Smith, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 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.