Breast augmentation – also referred to as a boob job – is the most popular cosmetic surgery in the country. Every year, hundreds of thousands of women receive this procedure in order to enhance the size, shape, and fullness of their breasts. If you are prepping for this cosmetic treatment, it is important to know that the majority of breast augmentation surgeries are performed with the use of ‘implants’ that are placed under the breast tissue or chest muscles. Implants currently available in the market have an average lifespan of 10 – 20 years. Breast surgeons may also use autologous tissue donated from other areas of the body to complete breast augmentation procedures.
While your surgeon will help you choose the best implant brand, type, and shape, it is important that you know what to expect.
Types of breast implants
There are three main types of breast augmentation implants:
- Saline implants – these contain a sterile saline solution such as salt water held within the silicone shell. Saline breast implants can be filled with varying amounts of the salt water solution to suit the patient’s desired feel, firmness, and breast shape. If a saline implant leaks, then the solution will be absorbed by the surrounding tissue and naturally expelled from the body.
- Silicone implants – these feature an outer shell that is filled with a silicone gel. Should a silicone implant leak, the gel will either escape to the breast implant pocket or stay within the shell. Because the implant may or may not collapse after leakage, women who choose this type of breast augmentation will need to undergo regular MRI or ultrasound scans to check their conditions.
- Gummy bear implants – these are also known as ‘form-stable’ breast implants because they maintain their shape even if the implant shell is broken. Gummy bear implants are generally a special kind of silicone implants that have thicker gel compared to traditional types.
Shapes of breast implants
There are two main shapes of breast implants that you can choose from:
- Round breast implants – because these are full at the top, they are a common choice for women who are looking to address breast sagging.
- Teardrop breast implants – these tend to taper at the top with a projection at the bottom. They are popular with women who prefer a natural look and feel with the fullness concentrated at the bottom of the breast.
Choose the right implant
With dozens of implant models, types, and shapes available – selecting the right one can be a hectic process. Most patients benefit from consulting a plastic surgeon to find the perfect implant model to suit their aesthetic desires. Your surgeon will listen to your goals for breast augmentation, revision, or reconstruction and decide what size and type makes sense for you.
During your initial consultation with Taylor Theunissen, MD Plastic Surgery, the surgeon will examine your breasts, listen to your goals, and take measurements before recommending an FDA-approved implant type. Dr. Theunissen also offers autologous breast reconstruction for women who are looking to use their own body tissue to attain the desired breast form and shape.
Get in touch
Choosing the right breast implant is important for the long term success of your augmentation. This can help prevent side effects such as bottoming out that can necessitate a revision procedure. Dr. Theunissen will discuss all options available for you, as well as show before and after photos to give you an impression of what you get with each implant type.