Are High Profiles Implants Mainly for Skinny Women?

150lbs 5'4

Doctor Answers 11

High profile breast implants

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High profile breast implants are not specifically designated for any particular body type. However, it is certainly more common for a thinner, taller patients to be fit into a high profile implant. Breast implants should be chosen based on two things: 1) your pre-operative breast dimensions, and 2) your desired volume increase.

High profile breast implants are for women with narrow breasts.

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1)  We mostly use MODERATE PLUS profile implants.  But if you want a size that is too wide for your chest, then we go to high profile.

2)  This is a pretty technical decision, and if you trust your surgeon to understand you and to operate on you, you are best off letting surgeon decide on implant profile.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

High Profile Implants Just for Skinny Women? #breastimplants

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No. Implants are picked based on specific measurements that we take in the office from your breast. Implants are like shoes. You can get them in flats, mid height, and tall like high heels. The choice of implant is based on the size a patient may desire and the look that they want. Each profile implant will give a very different look and can obtain very different goals. Smaller, more narrow chested women that want big implants may only be candidates for the high profile because the base of the implant is more narrow like that of a more petite patient.

High profile implants

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High profile implants have a narrower diameter for the same size volume. I find them useful when the chest wall is too narrow to accommodate a wider implant, when the breast is narrow and using a wider implant would cause a double bubble effect, when a large amount of fullness in the upper area is the desired look and in other circumstances depending on the individual anatomy so they are not just for skinny women.

Margaret Skiles, MD (retired)
Sacramento Plastic Surgeon

High profile implants jsut for skinny women?

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High profile implants in my mind are used for patients who are very narrow that want large breasts.  I often will use them or moderate plus profile implants for patients that choose silicone.

When to use High Profile Implants

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Hello, thanks for asking a very common question that a lot of women want to know about.  When we size women for breast implants, the first measurement that we often get is the base width (the width of the chest wall beneath the breast), we then have several options to choose from in terms of how far the breast projects (sticks out) from the chest.  To generalize across manufacturers, there is a standard projection, a moderate projection, and a high projection.  The choice depends on your body frame and the "look" that you want to achieve from the breast augmentation.  As you move from standard to higher projection implants, you will get a more rounded appearance of your breast.  At the end of the day, this discussion is best done in person with a board certified plastic surgeon.  Great question, thanks again and good luck with your consultation.

High Profile Implants for Skinny Women

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    In general, high profile implants are used when moderate profile implants are going to provide a width of implant that will not fit the chest wall width or breast imprint.  High profile implants provide the same volume but at a smaller base diameter.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

The (Pros and) Cons Of High Profile Implants

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High profile implants can be used by any patient, and they are potentially suitable for augmentation, revision, or reconstruction. Breast projection is sometimes difficult to achieve in reconstruction patients, and high profile implants provide an option to improve projection. Some surgeons use them for augmentation for a similar reason (to pack in volume and/or increase projection), but I do not prefer them, and try to avoid using them for augmentation whenever possible.
For a specific implant style, as implant volume increases, so does the diameter of the implant. For a given volume implant, as the profile increases from low to medium to high, the diameter decreases proportionately. In an exaggerated sense, the low profile implant resembles a pancake, the high profile implant resembles a sphere, and the medium profile implant is in between.

As a rough general rule for breast augmentation in my practice, maximum implant diameter should approximate the width of the breast, and should not exceed it by more than several millimeters. This means that women with wider chests and breasts have more options for implant selection. In contrast, petite women with very small/narrow chests and breasts have very limited options for implant selection. With a limitation in implant selection comes a limitation in volume as well.

I prefer to use a moderate profile implant for augmentation, when I can, for a number of reasons. For a petite woman with a narrow breast width, the volume options when selecting a moderate profile implant are limited. Many of these women desire more volume than a moderate profile implant would provide. One option would be to use an implant with a diameter larger than the width of the breast, but this can lead to a number of problems; so this is a less than desirable option. Another option would be to use a high profile implant. The narrower diameter of high profile implants allows more volume to be placed in the breast. So high profile implants allow petite women the opportunity to better reach their volume goals. In my augmentation practice, this is about the only time I use high profile implants. My preference would be to avoid them, but most of these petite women desire the greater volume even after a detailed discussion of the risks and benefits.

The low surface area-to-volume ratio of high profile implants increases the biomechanical stress placed on the breast tissue. As a result, this leads to more tissue stretch, thinning of the skin, breast gland atrophy, and more deformation of the soft tissue envelope. The result is aggravated stretching of the lower pole and subsequent further settling of the implant (compared to a moderate profile implant). This may lead to unwanted descent of the inframammary crease, produce pseudoptosis with additional loss of upper pole fullness, and result in a high-riding nipple-areolar complex.

The patient ultimately has to decide what is more important, short term volume outcome with possibilities for increased morbidity, or the potential for longer term shape and tissue stability that comes with smaller volume and/or moderate profile implants.

Best wishes, Ken Dembny

High Profile Implants

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High profile implants are an adaptation from the reconstructive world to give more choices to women.  The thought was that this would give more projection and volume to cosmetic breast patients with smaller dimensions.  Unfortunately, because of its design and improper usage, it carries with it a higher risk of complications than intermediate or low profile implants.  Additionally, it does not provide enhancement of the upper pole of the breast more than a lower profile implant, a concept that both patient and some surgeons have a hard time understanding.  From a longevity point of view, high profile implants impart more tissue stretch, atrophy, and deformation than their lower profile counterparts. Some of these long term changes are only partially correctable with a revision surgery.

If you think in terms of minimizing risk of both early and late complications, than you will stay clear of high profile implants.

Best of luck!


High Profile Implants for Skinny Women

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No, high profile implants can be for any type of patient. You should select your implant based on volume, profile and implant diameter. You want to select an implant with your surgeon to meet your goals and expectations. Implant diameter is very important to ensure the implant is not to larger for your chest or breast diameter. Implant volume will help you determine post op breast size. Implant projection will help determine your upper pole fullness.

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.