Full C or Small D - What Implants Should I Get?

I would like to get BA, but dont know what size I should go? I am a Small B now and would like a Full C or Small D. I am 5'2 and 135 pounds. I breastfed 2 children and have lost everything. I am asymetric and would like that fixed. Not sure if I need two different size implants or if one would make them symetrical? I am hoping I dont need a lift too! I would like a upper breast fullness. What is the best type and size of implant to get me to Full C/ Small D breasts?

Doctor Answers 18

Try on sizers

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To find out what size is right for you, you should try on sizers. I provide patients with a properly sized bra and t-shirt, as well as multiple saline filled implants of different sizes. By trying on various sizes it is easy for you to zero in on the size that you like best and that looks best for you. Our patients agree that it is far superior to computer imaging of the breast and feel that it is a terrific help in their decision to have Breast Augmentation surgery.

Size, Shape, Symmetry, Sagging Can Be Improved!

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  • Size: There are many approaches to sizing:
    • Bio-dimensional: your surgeon can select a size for you based upon your measurements, skin laxity, and your preferences for a shape (profile) and cup size.
      • the most natural or "stealth" augmentation will use the lowest profile implant that fits the width of your natural breast
      • women who prefer more upper chest fullness may select a medium or high profile implant
      • a medium or high profile implant may be preferable for breasts with more skin laxity
      • increasing from one profile to the next will generally add about a cup size
    • Sizers: try different implant sizers at your surgeons office to get the proportion  and volume you seek
      • this will NOT tell you anything about shape, because the implant sitting on your breast in a bra drapes differently from an implant inside your breast
      • the implant looks about 10% smaller when placed inside your breast, so choose a slightly larger implant to get the same "look."
    • Sizing at home with rice:
      • choose a bra you'd like to fit
      • place dry rice kernels in a zip lock and place this into the bra you'd like to fit
      • position the zip lock under your breast toward the bottom of the bra cup
      • add or subtract rice until you get the look you like
      • bring the zip lock to your plastic surgeon to measure the volume you have chosen
    • 3-Dimensional Imaging: (if your plastic surgeon has this technology)
      • he/she can take a digital image of your body using a camera specialized for this purpose
      • show you a simulation of your results, using different size and shape implants
  • Shape
    • A lift repositions the breast higher on the chest to reduce sagging and reshapes the breasts
    • In combination with an implant, creates more upper chest fullness
  • Symmetry involves size, shape, and position of the breasts AND the nipple-areola complexes
    • Some degree of asymmetry is normal!
      • your breasts will not be a perfect mirror image of each other
      • As one of my patients put it:"They are sisters, not twins!"
    • Small differences in size
      • accept a minor difference (it may be well within the range of normal: see above)
      • two different size implants can work well for small differences in size
      • reduction of the larger breast (eg., liposuction) and same size implants
    • More of an Asymmetry
      • Size and Shape
        • A reduction and lift helps to reshape and re-size the breasts to better match
      • Position
        • A lift helps to reposition the breasts and/or nipple/areolas to better match

To help you sort through all these choices and to find the best alternative to achieve your personal goals, call for an individualized consultation with a well qualified, experienced and Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Breast implant size is mostly up to you, within limits

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It is difficult to recommend a breast implant size without actually seeing the patient and examining her breasts in person.  Usually it is best to try out different sizes using the bra size that you desire.  To a certain extent, within limits based on the patient's body shape and tissue elasticity, there is a wide range of implant sizes that would work.  I recommend a face to face consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon in your neighborhood.  Names and addressed could be obtained by consulting the American Society of Plastic Surgeons website.

James Tang, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
3.4 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Augmentation of sagging breasts

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You really should consider a lift with your augmentation implants.  Enhancement is not just about volume, but shape as well.  The tragedy is realized when you have augmented sagging breasts that continue to sag.  Most surgeons will see best results in those who correct shape and volume together.  On that note, most patients after the implants have settled will comment that they should have chosen larger implants rather than smaller.  Happy breast results to you!

Choosing implant size

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I use a technique called dimensional breast augmentation which involves taking in a number of factors and measurements, so each patient is unique. That being said, given your height, weight, and your activity level, along with the fact you are considering a lift, I would say you are probably not that far off in choosing an implant in that range. Best thing to do is to see a qualified plastic surgeon that has good breast expertise.

Full C or Small D result from Breast Augmentation Surgery

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The actual size of a breast implant, measured in cc's, is really not very descriptive of what a breast augmentation will look like, or what the cup size will be. It is all relative to the size of the breast and the size of the patient preoperatively. A tall, broad-shouldered patient with small A-cup breasts may require 450cc implants to achieve a C-cup breast volume postoperatively, while a shorter patient with medium B-cup breasts may only need a 250cc implant to achieve a C-cup breast volume. The Full C seems to be one of the mist requested bra sizes, yet it means different things to different people. 
If a natural appearance is the goal, then the way to get the size right is to 'try out' different implant volumes and profiles in the operating room. Once the implant pockets have been created, sterile sizers can be placed in the implant pockets, and the upper half of the O.R. table raised so that the resulting breast appearance can be assessed with the patient in an upright 'sitting' position (chest fully upright) while under anesthesia. These sizers are available not only for each implant size but also for each implant profile: low, moderate and high (in this practice we use high-profile implants only in rare instances). Inflatable sizers are used for saline implant augmentations, and pre-filled gel sizers are used for gel implant augmentations.
For any patient there is obviously a range of implant volumes that would be considered natural-appearing, and a volume at which the upper pole of the breast begins to look very unnatural. While one patient may seek an augmentation that is 'perfectly natural', another may be interested in a result that is more on 'the full side of natural', and many patients do ask that the largest implant volume be selected that does not produce an unnatural fullness in the upper pole.  Look at many, many before and after images. Using images from your surgeon's before and after gallery is a very valuable means of communicating your goals.  

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 123 reviews

Implant Selection Process

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In order to make an accurate size recommendation, I would need to assess your chest wall and breast mound measurements and characteristics.  Unfortunately, there is not a general rule of thumb or objective criteria to implant selection.

Your plastic surgeon will perform several measurements of your chest wall and breast anatomy and determine a range of implants that both fit your chest wall and reach your desired goals.
The next step is to try on this range of implants in the office with your doctor.   The key to this success is showing your surgeon the body proportion you desire with a bra sizer and allowing your surgeon to guide you to the right implant.   It will be much easier to communicate in implant cc's than cup size when determining the appropriate implant for you.
I wish you a safe recovery and fantastic result.
Dr. Gill

Paul S. Gill, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Implant size choice

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There are several variables in determining implant size.  When recommending implant size for my patients, I consider the followings: 1) patients' anatomy (height, weight, chest width, chest height, amount of breast tissue) and 2) patients' desired look/goal.  Without knowing your chest measurement and breast tissue amount, I cannot give you any recommendation.  You should visit with board-certified plastic surgeon who will examine you.  Try implant sizers to get a rough estimate of the size you may want.  As you know, bra/cup size will vary depending on the brand.  Good luck with you.
Dr. Sugene Kim

Implant size selection and cup size

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It is difficult to predict your final cup size because cup sizes are not standardized.  Cup sizes vary by designer. 

I consider two factors when selecting implants for my patients: 1.Dimensional planning 2.Gel Implant Sizing system   Dimensional planning – The measurements of your chest wall are taken. Also, the breast dimensions including the height, width, and current dimensions of each breast form the basis of dimensional planning. Based on these measurements, the implant size is recommended. This will give you a unique breast implant that is suited for your body frame. However, there are some limitations of what size we can recommend. For instance, some implants may just be too big for a narrow chest wall. Your surgeon can review this with you during the consultation. Gel Implant Sizing system – During the preliminary breast implant consultation, you will be provided with an option to “try on” a variety of implant shapes and sizes. You can also visualize the possible outcomes of your surgery which helps you to get that perfect size to give you the shape that you longed for. This way your preferences are known and you can then pick a range of implants that will “fit” just right to give a soft natural fuller look.  If you have decided on saline implants, then based on the gel sizer you select, we can guide you to the saline implant that achieves a similar look. Hope this helps. Dr. Basu
Houston, TX  

Sizing of breast implants

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 Much of the final “look” achieved after breast augmentation surgery  depends on several factors:

1. The initial shape, size (volume of breast tissue), symmetry of the patient's breasts. In general, the better the  preoperative breast appearance the more likely the breast augmentation “look” will be optimal.
2. The experience/skill level of the surgeon is important in determining the final outcome. For example, the accurate and gentle dissection of the breast implant pockets are critical in producing  long-term  well-placed breast implants. I personally think that these 2 factors are more important than any others, including type (saline or silicone)  or model (low/moderate/high profile)  of implant.
3. The type of implant used may  determine the final outcome, especially if the patient does not have significant covering breast or adipose tissue. For example, some surgeons feel that silicone implants have a more natural look and feel than saline implants because silicone gel has a texture that is similar to breast tissue. Each patient differs in the amount of breast tissue that they have.  If a patient has enough breast tissue to cover the implant, the final result will be similar when comparing saline implants versus silicone gel implants.  If a patient has very low body fat and/or very little breast tissue, the silicone gel implants may provide a more "natural" result.
On the other hand, saline implants have some advantages over silicone implants. Silicone implant ruptures are harder to detect. When saline implants rupture, they deflate and the results are seen almost immediately. When silicone implants rupture, the breast often looks and feels the same because the silicone gel may leak into surrounding areas of the breast without a visible difference.  Patients may need an MRI to diagnose a silicone gel rupture.   Saline implants are also less expensive than the silicone gel implants.
Other differences involve how the breast implants are filled. Saline implants are filled after they’re implanted, so saline implants require a smaller incision than prefilled silicone breast implants.
On May 10, 2000, the FDA granted approval of saline-filled breast implants manufactured by Mentor Corporation and McGhan Medical. To date, all other manufacturers’ saline-filled breast implants are considered investigational.
As of 2006, the FDA has approved the use of silicone gel implants manufactured by the Mentor Corporation and Allergan (formerly McGhan) for breast augmentation surgery for patients over the age of 22.
4. The size and model of breast implant used may  make a  significant difference in the final outcome. Therefore, it is very important to communicate your size goals with your surgeon.  In my practice, the use of photographs of “goal” pictures (and breasts that are too big or too small) is very helpful. I have found that the use of words such as “natural” or “C cup” or "fake looking" means different things to different people and therefore prove unhelpful.
Also, as you know, cup size varies depending on who makes the bra; therefore, discussing desired cup  size may also be inaccurate.
I use  intraoperative sizers and place the patient in the upright position to evaluate breast size. Use of these sizers also allow me to select the breast implant profile (low, moderate, moderate plus, high-profile) that would most likely achieve the patient's goals. The patient's goal pictures are hanging on the wall, and allow for direct comparison.
I have found that this system is very helpful in improving the chances of achieving the patient's goals as consistently as possible.
By the way, the most common regret after this operation, is “I wish I was bigger”.
I hope this helps.

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.