Will switching from saline to silicone help with sagging? (Photo)
Doctor Answers 8
Will Switching from Saline to Silicone Help With Sagging?
Simply switching to a silicone implant of similar or larger volume will not solve the problem. In fact, a larger implant will only make it worse. What needs to happen is that the implant needs to be repositioned internally so that it sits higher on your chest wall. Historically this was accomplished either by suturing the internal pocket or capsule (so called capsulorraphy), or by reinforcing the internal pocket with an implantable material such as Strattice or Seri Scaffold. These reinforcing materials are expensive and take time to suture in place which makes for an expensive repair. Many others have suggested that you will also need a breast lift or mastopexy. I do not necessarily agree. You appear to have nice quality skin and it is obvious that your implant is dragging your skin and remaining breast tissue downwards. Often once the weight of the implant is removed, or internally supported, the residual skin elasticity may elevate your breast tissue along with your nipple. Thus you may be able to avoid the scars associated with a breast lift.
Another alternative would be to switch to a textured surface silicone gel implant along with internal suture tightening of the pocket and shrinking the capsule using a procedure called "Popcorn technique". This will create an internal "lift" and if your breast tissue has thinned, it may produce enough internal lift to allow you to avoid a traditional breast lift. The textured surface implant will adhere to your tissues thus helping to maintain your implant in position and avoiding the downward/outward descent of the implant over time. An example of this type of repair is shown in the breast implant revision photo at the top of this page.
Treating this problem by replacing your implant with a large very high profile silicone gel implant on top of the muscle would be a very poor choice. First of all, initially you will look ridiculous. Your tissues are already thin and they would become stretched even thinner by a larger implant. With the implant on top of the muscle this would predispose you to palpable or even visible rippling of your breast. Also a larger implant will only tend to drag your breast downward and outwards over time. You can't repeal the law of gravity with a bigger implant.
Finally, it is possible that you have a partial deflation of your right implant (usually a valve leak). At 8 years you should still be eligible for replacement of the implant under the manufacturers warranty. Often they will allow you to upgrade to a silicone gel implant at a reduced price and they will cover some of the cost of replacement.
Internal bra plus lift for sagging saline implants
- When implants fall too far to the side, that is a sign that the tissues are too weak to support the implant; an internal bra with Strattice or Galaflex will help.
- The internal bra will also help with rippling whether you go to silicone or stay with saline.
- The internal bra will also help support the implants for better long-term upper pole fullness.
- Although it does not appear that the nipple position is very low, a lift will probably be needed to adjust the skin envelope to the breast mound.
- Larger implants alone will probably make the issue worse not better.
Fight or Switch?
The answer depends upon several things.
First, has your right side deflated?
The answer depends upon your goals and desires.
If you are adamant that you do not want scars on your breasts, dont mind a large cup size, and can be satisfied with less than perfect, you can consider very high profile large Inspira implants. They will certainly raise your breasts/nipples, especially if your current implants are under the muscle. They would have to be placed on top.
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There is a small chance that you may be able to just get a capsule adjustment to help with some of the problems (the falling off to the side) you describe but need to be seen in person to make final determination.
Hope this helps and good luck.
Will switching from saline to silicone help with sagging?
Best to seek consultation with the board-certified plastic surgeons who can demonstrate significant experience achieving the types of outcomes you will be pleased with. Then, communicate your goals carefully as well. Use as many "visual aids" such as goal photographs during the communication process. Working together you will come up with a plan to achieve an outcome that you will be pleased with. Best wishes.
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.