Should I Switch from Silicone to Saline? (photo)

I currently have 700cc HP silicone unders. I had them done a little over a month ago and still contemplate whether they are big enough. I see a lot about saline to silicone but not much for vice versa. I don 't think my current PS 't does extra large implants ( I was looking into 1000cc saline) so I am not sure what he would think. I would consider using a different PS who did larger implants if I could figure out logistics. I assume I would need to find a PS who specializes in large implants.

Doctor Answers 15

Silicone gel to saline implants

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I always tell my patients that silicone gel implants are the Cadillac of implants and saline implants are the Honda of implants.  They will both get you to your destination but it's a matter of style.  By that analogy I mean that silicone gel implants more closely approximate the look and feel of real breast tissue.  Saline implants are basically a bag full of water and they have the potential to look/feel like a bag full of water.  Both will add volume but I think the silicone gel implants are a lot nicer.  Another thing to consider is that, the larger volume you use, the more your natural tissue has to stretch and thin out in order to cover the implant.  If the layer of tissue coverage over the implant is very thin, you may be able to feel/see ripples and wrinkles in an implant, more so with saline than with silicone gel.  Finally, the largest volume implant made by the three manufacturers approved by the FDA for selling implants in this country is approximately 750 -800 cc's.  These companies used to make custom-made implants for patients who wanted larger sizes but they don't do that anymore.  I know there are women out there with larger volume implants but I don't know where they are getting them or what the quality of those larger volume implants might be.

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

No Need to Increase Implant Size

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Your implants are very shapely and appear to fit your frame.  The implants are already large (700 ml).  You currently run the risk of stretching the skin over time with the implant size you currently have.  I would not recommend ANY larger implants whether they are silicone or saline.


Dr. ES

Silicone versus saline

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The silicone will have a more natural feel than saline, particularly at this size. Going larger will expose you to greater risks of complications. You may think that you aren't large enough but gravity may have a profound effect over time and going larger will only exacerbate this.

Switching breast implants from silicone to saline is a bad idea

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Thank you for your question and photographs. You currently have an excellent result. I question the wisdom of going larger but of course that is your personal option.

However switching from silicon gel breast implants to saline implants especially with a larger size, in my opinion is a bad idea. If he changes saline implants you run the risk of visible rippling and folds that can be seen through the skin which would make you very unhappy.

Risks of Over-Augmentation

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Everything we do in plastic surgery involves trade-offs.

It is critical that you are well informed and understand the pro's and con's of any procedure, before you decide to proceed.

You inquired about possibly switching from silicone to saline, but did not give a reason for your considering this option.

More importantly, you are contemplating increasing the size of your implants: there are significant potential risks to having implants that are too large for your body:

  • unnatural appearance
  • unnatural feel
  • seeing and feeling the edge of the implants
  • visible and palpable rippling
  • downward drift of the implants (bottoming out)
  • lateral drift: not just excessive fullness to the side, but the actual movement of your breasts too far to the side of your chest, when you lie back
  • symmastia: the implants connecting in the middle of your chest, with the loss of cleavage

I urge you to discuss with your plastic surgeon what your physical dimensions mean in terms of guidelines for avoiding the risks of over-augmentation.

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Large Implants and Soft Tissue Limitations

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Your implants are large; the soft tissue over them becomes thinner over time.  The larger the implant, the less cover the soft tissue can acheive.  One solution is to go with larger implants,......but cover the implants with your own body fat.  This is a new technique called COMPOSITE BREAST AUGMENTATION I developed and involves taking liposuctioned fat from unwanted body areas.


Saline implants will not help, and make the tissues thinner likely.


Best Regards,


Dr Del Vecchio

Silicone vs saline 1000 cc implants

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First, the US implant manufacturers do not make implants larger than 800 cc's, and the only way to get to 1000 is to overfill them which is not recommended and probably voids the warranty from the implant manufacturer.  ( You would have to check on that one).  But remember the larger you go, the more likely you may have problems with the implants.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Saline vs silicone

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Normally silicone implants feel softer.  Given the size of the device I don't believe the appearance or feel will be better.

Implant size

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I would urge caution going larger with saline. I have placed several sets of implants larger than 1200cc, but all were silicone imported from Europe with permission from the FDA. With saline implants you will be at high risk to get visible rippling.You will get significant thinning of the skin. You can get the skin lifting off the sternum. 

1000 cc saline implants

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   This upsize is technically possible and is done in a few women if they understand and accept the risks.  Tissue thinning as others have mentioned, back, neck, and shoulder pain, increased rippling, increased risk for extrusion, and increased droop over time, among others.

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.