Breast Implant Comparison
Breast implants, like natural breasts, come in many different sizes, shapes, and styles. At Beverly Hills Physicians, our doctors will work with you to determine what look will work best for you. The factors involved may include the thickness of your current breast tissue, your ability to heal and, of course, your personal preferences. At this early stage, however, looking at a breast implant comparison can help you to start thinking about the process.
Silicone Vs Saline Implants
There are a few key differences between the two most commonly used types of implants: silicone and saline. Here are a few key points:
All implants have a silicone shell but – as you can likely guess – silicone implants are filled with a silicone gel whereas saline implants are filled with a sterilized saltwater solution. Saline implants offer more flexibility if there is a follow-up revision procedure later on; also, some prefer its often fuller or rounder appearance. On the other hand, given that they are filled with water, ripples may appear in a saline implant. Most people agree that silicone implants feel softer and look more natural. Also, while revisions might be involved with silicone, complications are less likely so the chances of needing a revision are less.
There are four insertion points for breast implants: the armpits, the navel (belly button), areola, and beneath the breasts. Saline implants can make use of any of these points, but silicone implants cannot be inserted through the belly button or armpits because they are filled before entry. This is important to understand because postoperative scars tend to be more apparent in implants that have been inserted through the areola, bellybutton, or beneath the breasts, as opposed to the armpits. The downside is that there is a slightly increased risk for complications in procedures that go through the armpits or bellybutton.
Naturally, Beverly Hills Physicians plastic surgeons always seek to minimize visible scaring in every way possible. You’ll want to discuss the specific strategy that your doctor thinks will provide the best outcome.
While complications are rare for either option, an MRI is required to determine if a silicone implant has burst while a defective saline implant is usually apparent from its deflated-tire look. Since the saline solution is primarily sterilized water, it is harmlessly reabsorbed by the body and easily replaced in a follow-up visit. A silicone rupture, though, can be very difficult to notice without an MRI. Fortunately, today’s silicone implants are designed to be especially resistant to rupturing.
Silicone implants tend to last for decades without any need for maintenance while saline implants tend to need adjustments after about ten years. Fortunately, adjustments for saline implants are usually simple procedures.
The choice of the implant does not appear to have a major impact on recovery times.
Despite some urban legends you may have heard, there is little or no evidence that air travel can cause breast implants to rupture, much less explode. Research has cast strong doubt on the likelihood of air travel increasing the risk of a rupture.
Contrary to popular assumption, successful breast implants rarely impede breastfeeding. In fact, most mothers who can breastfeed before getting implants can do so after obtaining them.
Saline implants do tend to need revision after 10-12 years, but this almost always has more to do with lifestyle changes in the patient (like motherhood or natural aging) than implant failure.