How many people's implants shrink over time? I'm getting 385cc in under 2 weeks and I'm nervous they will be too small.

I am 25 years old, 123-128lbs, currently an 32A, hoping to be a 32C or 32D

Doctor Answers 8

Wait for some time

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The final appearance, shape, and movement are not exactly the same as normal breasts. The surgically enlarged breasts do not move in the same way as normal breasts. They tend to be firmer. The contours are usually somewhat different than normal breasts. In some patients these discrepancies may be rather noticeable. Although every effort is made to place the implants symmetrically, complete symmetry is rarely achieved. Immediately after surgery, the breasts are swollen and firmer. The final shape and size is approximated after 2 to 3 months, but up to one year may be required for the end result.


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The size of the implants do no change over time, although there are changes in breast volume. Often patients love their initial early post operative size, but a lot of this is swelling. It may take 12 weeks to get a sense of your final breast size. With weight change and breast feeding, the size of your breasts may change fur

Arko Demianczuk, MD
Vancouver Plastic Surgeon

Shrinking over time.

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The breast implants don't actually shrink over time, though breast tissue could.  However, many patients feel that they seem smaller once in the body due to pressure from tissue/muscle or the contrast noticed after swelling goes down. I advise my patients to estimate about a 20cc decrease visually when selecting their implants.

All the best

Implant size

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Choosing a size is all about a healthy conversation between you and your plastic surgeon. Anatomy and the size of your breast "footprint" or dimensions of your chest can help pick an implant. The thickness of the overlying breast is also an important factor in implant selection. Different implants have different projection and this varies by manufacturer. Picking the right implant for you depends on a number of factors and talking about this in consultation is the best way to go and sometimes requires changing the shape of the breast with a mastopexy too but implants don't really shrink unless there is deflation from rupture or a leak. Good luck, MMT

How many people's implants shrink over time? I'm getting 385cc in under 2 weeks and I'm nervous they will be too small

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Hello Brittnie Booth,
Thanks for your question.
Actually the implants never shrink.  The breast tissue surrounding the implants does shrink (atrophy) over time in response to physical pressure from the implant.  This is referred to as "thinning of the breast."
As a 32A cup to start with means you probably don't have much breast tissue to atrophy.  But, if you are worried, we usually recommend mildly oversizing the implant to account for the future tissue atrophy.
I hope this helps.
Dr. Shah

Manish H. Shah, MD, FACS
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Is 385 ccs too small?

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Thank you for your question.

There is swelling after surgery which causes a slight increase in initial appearance that that resolves. This is not really the implants shrinking. In answer to your direct question, implants do not shrink over time. That being said, there can be some changes that happen that causes them appear smaller than they were. This is mainly caused by degrees of capsular contracture.

Every breast implant has a layer of scar around it called the capsule. In some cases,(thankfully getting less frequent), this scar tissue layer becomes harder. The exact cause of this is unknown but certain techniques seem to have significantly lessened the incident of this.

When there is capsular contracture around the breast implant, it may cause it to look smaller. The actual implant has not leaked or really changed but the scar tissue around it does not let it act like its supposed to. It may appear to be smaller, rounder, firmer, displaced, distorted and in severe cases, even painful.

Although this is a known complication of implant surgery, the vast majority of women do not have significant problems with this.

In terms of picking the right size for you, it is my belief that most women are talking about projection when they think of too big or too small in terms of their selection. By this I mean how much the implant sticks out from your body.  One way to think of this is imagining an implant which was a huge pancake holding 385 ccs of liquid and putting it on your chest. I do not think you would consider this much of an increase in your breast size even though it was 385 ccs in volume. 

I'm sure your surgeon has a method which has worked well for him/her in terms of sizing you. Instead of concentrating on the ccs of an implant, it may be helpful to make sure you are getting enough projection away from your body to satisfy you. Your surgeon will help you recreate this projection with the appropriate implant.

I hope this helps.

Good luck!

Frederick K. Park, MD
Rocky Mount Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Best Breast Implants for ME?

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Thank you for the question.  
Ultimately, careful communication of your goals (in my practice I prefer the use of goal pictures, direct examination/communication in front of a full-length mirror, in bra sizers, and computer imaging) as well as careful measurements (dimensional planning) will be critical.

Generally speaking, the best online advice I can give to ladies who are considering breast augmentation surgery ( regarding breast implant size/profile selection) is:

1. Concentrate on choosing your plastic surgeon carefully. Concentrate on appropriate training, certification, and the ability of the plastic surgeon to achieve the results you are looking for. Ask to see lots of examples of his/her work.
2. Have a full discussion and communication regarding your desired goals with your plastic surgeon. This communication will be critical in determining breast implant size/type/profile will most likely help achieve your goals.
In my practice, the use of photographs of “goal” pictures (and breasts that are too big or too small) is very helpful. For example, I have found that the use of words such as “natural” or "C or D cup" etc means different things to different people and therefore prove unhelpful.
Also, as you know, cup size varies depending on him who makes the bra; therefore, discussing desired cup size may also be inaccurate. Again, the use of computer imaging has been very helpful during the communication process, in our practice.
3. Once you feel you have communicated your goals clearly, allow your plastic surgeon to use his/her years of experience/judgment to choose the breast implant size/profile that will best meet your goals. Again, in my practice, this decision is usually made during surgery, after the use of temporary intraoperative sizers.
I hope this (and the attached link, dedicated to breast augmentation surgery concerns) helps. Best wishes for an outcome that you will be very pleased with.

How many people's implants shrink over time? I'm getting 385cc in under 2 weeks and I'm nervous they will be too small.

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Implants shouldn't shrink over time...if you do experience a leak or a rupture, you would need to have your implants replaced. Just remember that immediately after surgery, you will be swollen but as the swelling subsides and your implants settle some, you will see your final shape/size. Your ideal implant size should have been determined by your board certified plastic surgeon based upon your breast measurements so make sure you feel comfortable with the size your surgeon chose for you. Good luck!

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.