Silicone cc's vs Saline cc's.. are they equal?

I was curious. I went from 270 cc's (saline) to 450 (silicone) and I am pretty much available to wear the same bra, presurgery.. is this normal? I also went from a teardrop shape to high profile... I wash hoping going from 270 to 450 would give me, at least, 2 cups bigger!

Doctor Answers 10

Are Saline And Silicone ccs Equivalent In Volume?

The very short answer is "yes".  Saline and silicone are equivalent in that cubic centimeters of saline and cubic centimeters of silicone are exactly the same volume. 

The configuration of the two breast implants are different, and this will have some impact on bra size.  However, the volume increase was only about 180 ccs.  In a woman with a 32 bra, 180 ccs equals one cup size.  If you have a 36 size bra, one cup would equat 240-260 ccs.  Therefore, there is no way you could have increased your bra size by two cups no matter what size band width you have.

Also, teardrop breast implants rarely fill out any given cup whereas high profile breast implants tend to fill up a cup, therefore it is possible to wear the same bra before and after your surgery, and just have a different amount of fill of that same bra.

Can wear same bra after surgery

Thank you for your question about your breast augmentation revision.

Without seeing before and after photos, this is hard to explain. There are many possibilities -
  • The bra has elastic in it and can fit many sized breasts
  • The 180 cc difference on your chest, given your height and weight, is not a full cup size difference.
  • The real question is - can you see the before/after difference and is it the look you want.
Always consult a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
Hope you find this information helpful. Best wishes.

Silicone cc's vs Saline cc's.. are they equal

Thank you for your question.  The cc size of silicone vs saline implants is not exactly the same but close.  The cc's in a saline implant refer to the amount of cc's of saline added to the implant but do not account for the volume of the implant shell.  The cc's of a gel implant refer to the total volume of the implant including the shell.  The shell even if the total volumes of the two were exactly the same there would still be a difference in appearance due to the different properties of gel and saline.  Having said that I would question why you thought that going from 270 to 450, a 180 cc difference would give you a 2 cup size increase in size.  If your surgeon told that it would then you were mislead as a 180 cc increase in most patients would at most be about one cup size.

Lars Enevoldsen, MD
Modesto Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Implant replacement

A two cup size increase is too much to expect from the implant exchange you had. The switch from saline to silicone and to a higher profile implant likely account for your noticing little change in size.

CC's are CC's

regardless of saline or gel.  BUT regarding your concerns, if your bra cups stretch in the very least, that may explain why you can use your old bras.  Just by the math, you have to be larger but when comparing saline to gel implants, its more from experience that it takes a little more gel volume to equal the look of a smaller saline implant.  Finally, your dimensions of the implants did change but I'm not sure what impact that would have on your ability to wear your old bra.  And an afterthought... were your saline implants filled to 270 or were they 270 cc implants that were filled higher?

Curtis Wong, MD
Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Listed volume of saline vs. silicone gel implants is essentially the same.

The difference between the given volume of a saline implant vs a silicone implant with that same given volume is essentially the same.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Silicone cc's vs Saline cc's.. are they equal?

I am sorry to hear about your concerns after revisionary breast surgery. Yes, although the volumes of saline breast implants will equate to the volume of silicone gel breast implants, the aesthetic outcome ( what the breasts look like) may be very different. Your case may demonstrate why very careful preoperative communication is one of the keys to success when it comes to elective breast surgery. Discussing goals in terms of cup size  increase, for example “2 cups bigger”, can be a source of miscommunication and disappointment.  In my practice, I ask patients to use as many “visual aids” as possible during the preoperative communication process. I also ask patients not to communicate their goals and/or evaluate the outcome of the procedure performed based on cup sizes. At this point, best to communicate your concerns/questions with your plastic surgeon who will always be your best resource. Best wishes for a happy new year.

#SiliconeVsSalinecc'sdifference

Great question, the short answer is not exactly. Saline cc's indicate the amount of saline placed inside the implants but does not take in account the volume of the shell. Silicone cc's represents the actual volume of the implant - gel and silicone together. 

Silicone vs saline size

Implants volume(cc's) is just one of many factors

Another is implant shape

Still another is the pocket dimensions; in general, larger pockets make the implants look smaller and

smaller/tighter pockets make the implants look larger.

Was any pocket/capsule work done at your exchange operation?


Best of luck

Andrew Kornstein, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Gel looks smaller and conforms smaller than saline

Saline always looks larger due to the properties of water in a plastic bag.  Additionally, a gel implant that would look larger typically would also be one with a larger diameter which is a moderate or moderate plus type of style.  Now high profile is more narrow typically but gives a greater projection.  Bra sizes do not correlate with implant styles and sizes.

Peter J. Capizzi, MD
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 81 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.