Decreasing volume of implants
Whenever you go smaller after having implants for a while, you may require a lift. This is hard to predict for all patients.
Volume versus dimensions or effects
250cc implants compared to 350cc implants will have a narrower base width, less height, less projection, and about a third less volume.
The issue is really what the proper dimensions are for a given patient's breast and what effect that will have, not how many cc's volume.
It's a bit like comparing a size 4B shoe to a size 6D shoe. The difference matters in fitting and the particular person's foot, not the number.
Proper fitting of breast implants is like a dressmaker fitting a dress. The patients dimensions are the most important but there are choices that affect the result.
The breast implant is sized by measuring the width of the breast and making sure the width of the implant fits inside this. A round implant of a known width can also be checked to be sure it will fit and fill the upper pole of the breast. The patient's choice (other than saline or gel-filled) is for the forward projection. A low profile saline implant (Allergan) whether saline or the equivalent in gel will make the breast look about a cup size larger for a given chest size around, something that doesn't change with breast augmentation. This determines the number of cc's of the implant, but what the patient really wants to know is the effect.
The next choice up is a moderate profile saline implant (Mentor and Allergan) and the equivalent in gel. Mentor also has a moderate plus saline implant that is between a medium and high profile but their high profile implant is not scaled for the width. Allergan doesn't have a moderate plus profile saline but does have a properly scaled high profile. The gels are very similar in dimensions/volume for both manufacturers and aren't called "low" "medium" and "high" profile but are equivalent to that concept.
250 cc breast implants will probably not look smaller than 350cc implants
100 cc can make a difference in visible breast size in a small breast on a small woman. Without information about your height, weight and bra size, I don't know if you are petite or full bodied or if you wear a 34B with or a 36 DD with your implants in place.
Your posting brings up a serious question for me though, do you want implants at all any more? I have not evaluated you in person, nor do I have the information above, but sometimes pregnancy can change the shape and size of the breasts so that implants are no longer needed for the volume you want. The breasts might be droopy and need a lift if the implants are removed, but these are all issues that you should be able to discuss with your surgeon. Given the information you have provided, you might want to get a second opinion with another surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. There sounds to me that there should be choices than just downsizing by 100cc, but advice can only be given in person with a full consultation.
Difference between 250 cc and 350 cc breast implants
The most difficult communication with Cosmetic Surgery patients is determining breast implant size. We spend 1-2 hours with our patients trying to read their minds about what their mental image and goal is.
We first try to learn what size the patient desires without using cc's or cup size. There is no industry standard for cup size. Every manufacturer is different and size varies by both style and back strap size.
The same implant will give different results on different women. Starting breast size, skin laxity, height, thin versus heavy, and sagging all influence the final cup size.
To help you visualize the difference between these sizes, fill 3 glasses as follows:
- 3 OZ equals approximately 100 cc's; the difference between the two sizes.
- 8 OZ equals about 250 cc's
- 12 OZ equals about 350 cc's
I hope this information helps you visualize the possibilities.
250cc Breast Implants be significantly different from 350cc
Yes, No , Maybe! Without photos, we cannot even try to guess if the question of size difference is a good one. Please forward photos for a specific answer, not my guess. Regards.
Down sizing to a smaller breast implant
It is very common for patients to try and correlate the size (in cc's) of a breast implant with the cup size they are trying to achieve. I tell all of my patients that each persons breast anatomy is different and therfore, one size implant does not have the same results on each individual. Without a picture or the ability to evaluate you, I can't give you an accurate answer to your question.
What I can say is that based on your history, you will most likely need a lift with a decrease in the size of your implant. Do not get hung up on the amount of cc's you should go down to but instead on the final appearance you are trying to achieve.
Make sure you and your board certified plastic surgeon have a thorough discussion of what you would like to acheive and if this is realistic. Once you and your surgeon are on the same page, you can proceed with the comfort and confidence of knowing what to expect and therefore, increase the chance of having a successful surgery.
Communicate carefully, then trust your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
Achieving the Beautiful Breasts You Desire!
One of the things I find most interesting is the amount of misinformation the average patient must sift through when researching breast augmentation surgery. In particular, I think that many patients become overwhelmed with implant choices and the abundance of information about these options available on the Web...
This is complicated once they contact a surgeon or two for information about the implants, and which is most likely to give them the result they desire. Somewhere along the way, opinions expressed by a surgeon are perceived as fact by a prospective patient (because of the surgeon's reputation or the apparent strength of his/her opinion), who then becomes more confused when she hears a differing opinion.
This leads to ridiculously technical questions being posted on sites like RealSelf and others, such as:
"I am 5'5", 125 lbs, my measurements are 34, 22, 36. I have had 3 babies, all by C-section, and I breast fed two of them. My breasts sag a little, but not as much as some women I have seen. I want to have a full C-cup breast. Should I get 325 cc Allergan 410 style implants, or Mentor 350 cc Moderate profile implants. Projection is more important to me than a natural shape..."
Every time I get one of these over-thought questions, I always think the same thing... ???????
Let's take a big step back from the trees here and take a look at the forrest in front of us, shall we?
Fundamentally, the reason any woman seeks breast augmentation is because she wants to achieve a certain appearance, right? Let's repeat that- to achieve a certain appearance. NOT a certain bra size, or a certain implant volume, or even a certain implant type. When you first stared to think you might want an augmentation, you didn't think, "I would like it if I could have 350cc implants"... You probably thought, "I would love to look like that (after admiring another woman's breasts)..."
So if we can agree that what you are really after is an appearance you would be happier with, (as I always tell my patients) let's make the desired appearance the focus of our communications... Let us both ignore bra sizes (which are not standardized and the choice of which is very arbitrary) and implant types/sizes (for now)... Let's first understand what you want to look like. I think you would agree that if we are able to make you look the way you wanted to look, the letter on your bra and the number on your implant is lees important, right? Help me understand what you want to look like, and I can give you a very accurate recommendation of options for achieving that appearance- provided a careful physical examination has also occurred.
Why is the exam so critical? After all, can't we just put small implants in women who want small breasts and larger implants into those who want larger ones?
The exam is critical, because for any one particular woman, there are only a few good choices of implants available, regardless of her goals, and these options are arrived at by taking careful stock of her breast tissue, skin, and frame. In other words, your anatomy will, to a large extent, help us understand the implant options that would make you look the best. This is the "One Right Result" concept. The taking of these measurements is so important, I do it myself every time, and based on these measurements and my patient's goals, then make recommendations regarding the implant options available to her (as these options would be different for different women).
While (as with any aesthetic procedure) no guarantee of outcome can be given, you are much more likely to achieve your desired outcome if you focus on communicating your desired appearance successfully with a skilled and experienced, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon than by over-researching the implants and micro-managing the details of the surgery. In fact, I can think of no better way for you to increase the odds of you ending up dissatisfied.
So don't over-think it... Think carefully about the appearance you want, communicate it carefully to your surgeon (using photos if possible), and make sure that the implant choice arrived at by the two of you together is based on both your anatomy and your goal. You'll be happier and the process will be less stressful!
Ups and downs of breast size
Determining breast size during breast surgery is difficult. Most women want to have reasonable fullness but do not want excessive fullness so that they look artificial. They best way to achieve the look you desire would be to bring a picture of what you desire for breast size and shape. Then, have your PS evaluate your current anatomy to see if he or she can achieve that size and shape. It boils down to valuing/trusting that surgeon's judgement.
In my opinion you have two options. The first is to remove the implants only leaving the breast with a deflated look. Possibly a lift could be done at the same time if the remaining breast tissue is not to thin. The resulting lift will make you small. The other option is a lift and trading for smaller implant. Trust your surgeon or visit with other board certified plastic surgeons to get their opinion. Good luck.
Breast lift and downsizing.
Breasts that are lifted often look smaller. Combining a breast lift with a small implant such as 250 should achieve a full C-cup in the average patient. However, your alternative is to do a lift without an implant depending on the amount of ptosis present as well as the size of the existing breast tissue..
Personally, I can not give you an answer without additional information, and ideally, and exam. That said, there is a big difference between the two sizes. You can't just choose an implant based on it's size.
One thing you may also want to consider is a low profile implant which will give you fullness with a smaller sized implant without a lot of projection, and I find this to be a good choice in women such as yourself who may look heavy with the traditional profile implants.
Finally, if you are getting a lift or even implant exchange the breast size can be reduced somewhat by removing breast tissue or even liposuction.