Breast Implants Vs. Breast Augmentation: is There a Difference?

I notice that people talk about Breast Augmentation and Breast Implants... Is there a difference between the two???

Doctor Answers 18

Implants vs. Augmentation

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Breast augmentation could be done with fat grafting or a vacuum-assisted technique, but these produce relatively small changes as compared with breast augmentation using implants.

Most of the time, the terms are used interchangeably.

Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Breast implants and breast augmentation alike

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Both terms are used simultaneously to describe breast enlargement surgery, as well as breast enhancement. The breast implants are what is used to make the breasts larger in appearance.   My best advice would be to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss the best and safest possible options for you. During your consultation, all your questions should be answered. Saline vs. silicone gel implants will be compared and the pros and cons of either will be discussed also. Good luck.

Breast augmentation usually means breast implant placement

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The term "Breast Augmentation" is somewhat generic but usually indicates increase in volume, which is done more often than not with implants. The terms are essentially synonymous.

Best Regards

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon

It really depends on why the implants are placed

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Hi there- Breast augmentation will almost always involve the placement of implants, but implants are not always or only placed for augmentation, as they are also often used for reconstruction of the breast after surgery for breast cancer. In the case of women who do not have cancer, and are seeking a larger or more shapely breast contour, breast implants and breast augmentation are usually both referring to the same procedure, which may be combined with various techniques for re-shaping of the breast, depending on your goals and examination. I hope that clears it up for you.

No, they are the same.

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Breast Augmentation, refers to the enhancement or increase in size of the breast. This is done most often with Implants. There have been attempts to use natural tissue, similar to reconstruction of the breast. However, in a cosmetic, elective situation, those operations are long, expensive and with increase risk. Attempts have been made to increase the use of Fat Transfer to enlarge the breast. I feel this is not appropriate at this time. It masks the results of a mammogram and may decrease our ability to detect breast cancer. No study to this time has disproven this issue.


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Breast augmentation implies adding volume to a breast that is felt by the patient to be too small.  The extra volume comes from placing a breast implant.

Breast augmentation vs implants

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Breast augmentation refers to the surgical procedure, while breasts implants only refer to the devices that are placed within the breast during the surgery to enhance volume. They are often used interchangeably.

Breast implant dictionary

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Both breast implants and breast augmentation represent the same surgery.  Technically speaking, breast implants are the devices used for breast augmentation or breast volume enhancement.

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Breast Implant and Breast Augmentation: 6 in one, 1/2 dozen in the other

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Breast implants (prosethetic devices) are used to accomplish breast augmentation.  The implant is the means to the end: the augmentation.

Carmen Kavali, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Breast implants and breast augmentation

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Breast augmentation and breast implants are not the same, although they are relatively interchangeable.  Breast augmentation involves increasing the size of the breast.  This size increase can be achieved with breast implants, fat transfer, or flap placement.  By far, the  most common way to perform breast augmentation is with breast implants.  Fat transfer is becoming more popular but more research and experience is needed.

Naveen Setty, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 78 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.