I'm getting Breast Augmentation in 2 months. I had originally decided on a 320cc silicone implant, but now feel safer going with saline.I contacted my plastic surgeon and it was clear she was trying to dissuade me from going this route. She believes I will be much happier with the look of silicone and stated that she rarely does a saline implant anymore, as almost all of her patients request silicone. Please help me make heads or tails with this decision I need to make. Can a saline implant give a comparable natural look?
Saline Vs Silicone Breast Implants for a More Natural Look?
Doctor Answers 26
Saline and silicone breast implants will look the same
There has been a general push toward the silicone gel breast implant and a feeling that patients will be 'happier' with the gel. The bare truth is that both work very well and I defy anyone to show a picture of a well performed breast augmentation and be able to tell if the implant is indeed gel or saline. Both will look very natural. The next issue is feel. It is true that the saline breast implant will have a greater tendency to show through a ripple, especially in thin skin, however in place in the breast the saline implant is soft and compressible and has a flow characteristic that makes it satisfactory and natural in most who seek augmentation with an under the muscle approach. The gel implant may feel softer, though it may not. The more cohesive the gel, the stiffer the implant. The extreme is the 'gummy bear' implant where the implant is form stable which flexes or compresses and then resumes its shape. It can look wonderful, though 'natural' it is not. Remember that with each implant there are trade offs, some more acceptable to a patient than others. Take your time to explore, and resist a push to one implant over another until you understand what your choice will mean in the long term.
Best of luck,
The "look" of saline vs gel implants
If you looked at 10 patients with breast implants, half with gel and half saline, you would not be able to tell them apart based on the "look." Each look fine. The only difference is in the "feel." If a saline patient leans way forward, you can typically feel or sometimes even see ripples along the lower outside edge of the implant. If that wouldn't bother you and if you feel "safer" with the saline, go with them! Make sure they are under the muscle.
Saline vs. Silicone Breast Implants- Does it matter?
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Silicone versus saline implants
Some of the reasons for visible rippling, which tend to be higher with saline implants include:
1. thin skin and minimal breast tissue with visibility of normal folds
2. moderate profile saline implants are more likely to ripple than high profile saline
3. saline are more likely to ripple than silicone implants
4. over the muscle placement are more likely ot have visible rippling than under the muscle
5. weight loss may make rippling more noticeable
6. involutional breast atrophy after nursing may make rippling more apparent
7. breast ptosis (sag) may make rippling more pronounced
8. capsular contracture with "scrunching" of implant causing folds
9. textured surface causing folds and knuckles
10. partial deflation of implant with collapse and folding
11. underfilling of implant
12. flipping of implant
Go for Silicone Breast Implants for a more natural look
If it is a close choice for you, go with SILICONE.
Yes, great results have been achieved with both saline and gel implants.
The advantages of saline are lower cost, ability to be placed through a smaller incision and by being able to put more or less saline in - we can correct minor asymmetries.
The advantages of gel implants are, they are lighter, they ripple less and they feel much more like the real breast tissue.
Saline vs silicone implants
You should first be aware that there are no health risks of saline or silicone implants. Silicone implants have been studied extensively over the past 20 years and are FDA approved.
You can have a very natural result with either saline or silicone. Saline and silicone "look" quite similar. However, silicone breast implants "feel" more natural to the touch; this is why most patients and surgeons are now using more silicone breast implants. One potential problem with saline implants is that of rippling or wrinkling of the implant edges, which can often times be seen or felt on the side of the breast. This phenomenon of rippling rarely occurs with silicone due to its thicker, gel composition.
Please meet with your surgeon again to look at more implants and photos of patients to further assist in your decision.
Results can be good for both saline and silicone breast implants
Good results can be had with both. To a large extent the decision of one versus the other depends on the patient's natural breast/chest anatomy. The thin patient with minimal tissue would often do better with the silicone implant in terms of ripples, and a natural feel. Otherwise, saline is acceptable.
Safety is not really a consideration as I feel both are "safe". Deflation is a possibility, and the saline implants go flat. The silicone implant, more involved and hence the need for MRI analysis. Not really a safety issue, but a consideration. All things being equal, go with what you are comfortable with.
A Natural Look with Saline or Silicone Implants
Silicone implants are made with a silicone outer shell and are filled with a gummy-bear consistency silicone on the inside. More women tend to choose silicone breast implants due to the natural feel and appearance. Silicone implants are now made of a cohesive gel which are anti-leak even when cut. Look and feel like natural breasts due to the cohesive silicone gel material. New generation silicone gel implants are far superior than those used in the past and have a proven track record of safety. Silicone implants have gone through more testing than any other medical device and are the preferred choice for over the muscle implant placement.
With both implant types there are choices when it comes to size, shape, and profile.
Such will be discussed in greaterl detail at your consultation.
Gel vs. saline implants
Saline Vs Silicone Breast Implants for a More Natural Look?
One the use of silicone implants has made a dramatic change in terms of natural feel and shape. The silicone implants over saline implants are much softer and look more natural. With a silicone implant a patient would have to place a much bigger implant to have a very round “fake” appearance. This is because the saline implants are very firm and thus create a round unnatural shape. The silicone implants because of how soft they are tend to give subtle and natural appearance.
There is also a wide range of silicone implants in terms of various profiles (projection) of the implant. This selection of various profiles for your silicone breast implant give patients the ability to control the desired result from your breast augmentation. It also allows your surgeon to choose the implant that will best fit your body.
The other benefit of silicone implants over saline is the decrease appearance of rippling from your implants. Patients that are very thin are at risk for rippling, the use of silicone implants can help decrease this visible rippling as the new silicone implants have a cohesive gel that is much less likely to ripple.
Please discuss your breast augmentation surgery with your board certified plastic surgeon and let them help guide you during the process.
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.