What is the Importance of BWD? Trying to Understand. How Much Smaller Than Your BWD Should You Go? (photo)

How important is it to match the implant to your exact BWD? My bwd is 12.5cm, but I want a small implant. I really hoped to have an implant of 250cc or lower, max 300. (I'm hoping to go from 34a-->34b or c) Yet at this width, most implants are a lot greater volume. I am seriously considering the sientra shaped anatomical implant but the most appropriate volume has a width of 11.5-- would this be too small? One doctor said I absolutely shouldn't go below 12.5 width, but another said 10.5-12.5.

Doctor Answers 13

Implant selection and breast width

Selecting your implant size is a challenging part of the breast augmentation process. It is one measurement and is important to be near your breast width with the implant diameter, but it doesn't have to be an exact match. Your other goals are important as well, and with a low profile implant you should be able to remain in the size range you are hoping, with a relatively natural upper pole profile, while filling out the entire width of your breast. Best of luck!

Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Benefit from a wider implant...

I think most of us try to get as close as possible to a patients BWD without going over much (because too wide and the implants can roll up on themselves) and going with an implant as small as you are, I think you will benefit from one a little wider. I worry that the Sientra will give you a more narrow look....

John J. Corey, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Breast Width Important

Thank you for your photo. I typically go either 1 cm over or 1 cm under the breast width. Anything larger anything smaller would be inappropriate.

Dr. ES

Implant diameter confusion

The BWD can be measured by the tape but this doesn't necessarily tell you what the "ideal" implant diameter should be.  The ideal implant diameter has to do with body type, BWD, soft tissue coverage, breast volume distribution and a patients goals regarding optimal shape and size.  I can't make any recommendations for implant diameter based on a photo but I can tell you that for patients with breasts and build like yours with a goal of a conservative, natural breast I would recommend an implant slightly below your measured base.  In my practice Vectra 3D imaging is helpful converting the conversation into an image to help you feel comfortable with the look and dimension of the implant.  

York Jay Yates, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 112 reviews

What is the Importance of BWD? Trying to Understand. How Much Smaller Than Your BWD Should You Go?

Seems to me you are fixated upon the BWD measurement vs the asymmetry that is demonstrated in your posted photo! I agree with the 10.5 to 12.5 range in width of the implants. But do not forget about your obvious asymmetry. 

What is the Importance of BWD? Trying to Understand. How Much Smaller Than Your BWD Should You Go?

        The BWD can be matched with a lower profile implant of the volume you desire.  You do not need to have a narrower implant than BWD.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of breast augmentations each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Breast width measurements

Implants are usually  measured based upon many criteria including the base diameter . That is one criteria of several.  One goal is to find an implant that falls within the range of the base diameter.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Base Diameter Just One of Many Important Factors

Base diameter is simply one of the many factors PS use to help patients determine the best possible implants for them.  It is also a very subjective measurement and matching it exactly is not nearly as important as combining it with all of the other factors that are critical in choosing the correct implants.  Other things to consider are the dimensions of your chest and body, ultimate volume that corresponds to the bra size you want, how natural you want your breasts to look, how much upper pole fullness you want, etc.  Make sure you understand and are completely satisfied with the operative plan before surgery...not being sure will only lead to lots of unhappiness later.

Eric Sadeh, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Breast Width and Implant Sizing

Measurement of the breast base width allows one to determine the proper base width of the implant used. The profile then determines the size of the implant. You should be able to find an implant that fits your breast base width and is not too large.

Robert T. Buchanan, MD
Highlands Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Breeat implant base diameter

The breast base diameter should be around the same as your desired breast implant base width.  It does not have to be exact.  It depends upon the shape you are trying to achieve.  It is just one of many factors that must be considered in breast augmentation surgery and implant selection.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

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.