I'm 5'7, 117lbs, with a 27 inch ribcage. What size will take me from a 32A to 32C? 360cc or 400 cc UHP implant? (photo)

My stats are 5'7, 117 Ib and 27" ribcage. My surgery is in two weeks but I keep going back and forth on size. I want them to be large enough to give me cleavage but not overly large. A regular C cup would be nice. I am getting them under the muscle so that makes a difference.

Doctor Answers 10

Implant size

Thanks for your question. Its important to understand a few things before choosing the size for you.

First, there isnt a number of ml or a cup size that is correct, because what you're going for is a certain look on your body. This is influenced by your height, frame width, amount of current breast tissue, and your desired result.

Cup sizes differ between manufacturers and how people wear them, so using them as a guide will lead to disappointing communications between you and the surgeon, and possibly the result. After your consult and examination you will have a range of implants that will safely fit within your anatomy. The best way to estimate the size is then to try on several different sizes until you find the one that most approximates the look you're trying to achieve. Whatever cup size and ml this turns out to be will be the correct one.

Also, the difference you are considering is only 40 ml, so its very small in the grand scheme of things and isnt going to change the character of the outcome much. Its a slight difference, barely more than a single ounce or a small shot glass of volume. I wouldnt lose sleep over this amount.

Bakersfield Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews


There is no way to guarantee a particular bra size. Bra sizing varies greatly between bra manufacturers and a C in one bra will be a D in another. What matters more than the assigned bra size is the way the implant looks on you. The best option for your body and aesthetic goals can be determined in a thorough implant sizing session.
Implant sizing depends on several factors. One of the most important factors is your breast width. Generally, your surgeon will measure your breast width, and then provide you with a range of implant sizes appropriate for your native breast size. There are more nuances to it than just what I've described, but this approach works for most women.
I usually have my patients bring in a large bra and a tight t-shirt to do sizing. I'll then choose 3-4 implants that I feel are appropriate, and have my patients place them in the bra under the tight t-shirt. My patients can then look in the mirror and get a good sense of what they will look like with the provided implant sizes. My patients like this approach and get a great idea of how they will look.
By using this technique, your surgeon can outline a range of appropriate implant sizes that will be aesthetically pleasing, and you make the final decision.
I hope this helps. Good luck!

Asif Pirani, MD, FRCS(C)
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Sizing breast implants and results in cc's

I would disagree with the responses here except that it's difficult to determine sizes without an exam. I would also disagree that using external sizers to determine cc's of volume and its effect is effective.
Cup sizes are far from exact and there is no way to easily measure your current size in cup sizes or volume in cc's. 
The answer to your question, however, is reasonably straightforward because it's more like fitting your foot to a shoe or your body to a dress than choosing a size or a number of cc's and making it work. The difference is that you can't try on a breast implant in the same sense as trying on a shoe or dress. The key is making sure the implant fits behind the base of your breast and knowing what the effect of the forward profiles will be.
In general, an implant that fits the base of your breast is determined by measuring the width of your breast upright with arms down. About 3/4 to 1 cm is subtracted to allow for the skin level. In a round implant in the subpectoral position, this can be positioned behind your breast without distorting it, without worrying if it will fit during surgery, and will fill out the base of your breast with a natural look. The forward volume or profile of round, smooth surface implants that are scaled for the width are low, medium, and high profiles (not always called that). The effect of the lowest profile implant that fits the base width of your breast will make your breasts look about one cup size larger. The high profile implant of the same width will make you look about two cup sizes larger, and the medium will be in between. Since you look like a mid to upper A cup now, if you want to look natural and about two cup sizes larger to a mid to full C cup, you should choose a high profile, round, smooth surface saline-filled or gel-filled implant that is a bit less than the width of your breast. The number of cc's is determined by looking up the correct diameter under high profile implants. If you or the surgeon chooses an implant that is too big for the base width of your breast you risk creating distortions and unnaturalness and the need for revisional surgery. It's like trying to cram too big a foot into too small a shoe. You might get it to work without distortion and problems but why not use something you know fits and what effect it will have. 

Scott L. Replogle, MD
Boulder Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Right implant

Thank you for your question about breast augmentation.

  • This is a difficult question to answer long-distance
  • Choosing an implant is the MOST complicated surgical decision - so many choices.
  • But 400 usually ends up a D cup (by which I mean, larger than normal)
  • You are tall, slim and tiny around the chest. 
  • An UHP profile will give you volume but may look unnatural.
  • The 360 sounds the better choice. But if the 360 is also a UHP....
  • maybe you should to back to your surgeon and try on moderate and moderate+ profile to see if these might work for you. It's work deciding, I know - but you'll be sure you make the right choice. Best wishes.

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

27 inch rib cage

A 27" rib cage is tiny. That means you breast diameter is some where in the range of 9-10cm at best. 360-400cc UHP implant would definitely make you a D post op. If your looking for a C it would be around 300cc. I always tell patients not to be concerns about cup size. I recommend trying in sizers to find a cup size you are comfortable with and go from there.

Johnny Shea-Yuan Chung, MD, FACS
Allentown Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

I'm 5'7, 117lbs, with a 27 inch ribcage. What size will take me from a 32A to 32C? 360cc or 400 cc UHP implant?

My over the internet guess is 400 to 450 cc range UHP implants. Best to discuss in detail again with your surgeon... 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

How to go from a 32 a cup to a C cup

Generally speaking it takes between 150 cc to 200 cc to increase 1 cup size.  Therefore 400 cc of breast implant would be expected to increase your cup size from A to C. However I agree it is best to go back to see your plastic surgeon and undergo a breast implant sizing system evaluation.  During this the surgeon will place different sized implants into your non-padded bra so that you can see how you will look.

In my opinion it is more important to try to achieve the look you want rather than to be focused strictly on cup size.  The breast implant sizing system allows you to do this.  You can also do the Rice test in the privacy of your own home.

Alter high profile implants create a distortion of normal breast anatomy.  A moderate profile plus is a more natural appearing breast implant shape.

Breast augmentation

In breast augmentation I have chosen to spend time reviewing photographs with patients to fully understand their expectation of size and shape. Many times this simply raises more questions. I will make measurements and use the implant guides to allow the patient to understand exactly the sizes that are reasonable for their body type and measurements.

Please find an experienced Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and member of the Aesthetic Society using the Smart Beauty Guide. These Plastic Surgeons can guide you on all aspects of facial surgery, breast augmentation and body procedures including tummy tucks or mommy makeovers!

Cup size

Since there are no standard cup size definitions, I would hesitate to make the recommendation that you are seeking. 

I would suggest that you try on implant sizers in your surgeon's office, and the surgeon can use that info along with breast measurements to recommend the implants to use. I would expect an implant in the 400 cc range will give a 2 to 3 cup size increase. I suspect that an ultra-high profile implant will look rather unnatural on so thin a frame as you have. 

Best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Implant Selection

Thank you for your question. It is much better to accurately discuss implant volume and projection with an in office exam and detailed measurements.

In order to make an accurate size recommendation, I would need to assess your chest wall and breast mound measurements/characteristics. I use these measurements to help me during the sizing process to guide you to a safe result for your chest wall and just as important, one that meets your end desires.

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 during the sizing process.

In addition, review of photos and use of rice bags can be very helpful to the patient and surgeon in achieving a safe and happy result. Close intereaction and involvement from your surgeon during this process can help alleviate the anxiety and fears of choosing the right size.

I wish you a safe recovery and fantastic result.

Dr. Gill

Paul S. Gill, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 86 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.