Soft and natural feeling, silicone breast implants are a popular option for a lot of our Little Rock breast augmentation patients. You can choose from a number of sizes and profiles of the popular round silicone MemoryGel implants, as well multiple sizes for MENTOR’s MemoryShape “gummy bear” shaped implants. Dr. Branman has extensive experience with both of these options, and can guide you in your decision.
Silicone Breast Implant Safety and the FDA
During the 1990s, the FDA banned silicone breast implants because they were believed to cause various Connective Tissue Disorders (CTDs). In 2006, after years of rigorous testing and numerous studies, the FDA approved the latest generation of highly cohesive silicone implants as a safe and effective option for breast augmentation surgery.
Today, over a decade later, you have more options than ever in soft, natural-feeling silicone gel implants. Newer anatomically shaped options, known as “gummy bear” implants, offer patients who prefer a more sloping breast shape a durable silicone implant that holds its shape.
Do silicone breast implants look more natural than saline?
The main difference between silicone and saline breast implants is the material used to fill the breast implant shell. All breast implants are made out of a silicone outer shell. Saline breast implants are filled with a sterile saltwater solution, while silicone breast implants are filled with a cohesive silicone gel.
What this means for you is a slightly different feel and sizing precision between the two. Saline implants feel firmer and can be filled to a very precise amount during breast augmentation, while silicone gel is softer and comes pre-filled in the size & profile you choose before surgery. Ultimately, a natural looking breast augmentation comes down to your goals and your cosmetic surgeon’s skill and experience. Dr. Branman’s patients who are good candidates for and who choose saline are by and large very happy with their results; those who choose silicone feel the same.
Benefits of Silicone Gel Breast Implants
One of the biggest benefits of silicone breast implants over saline breast implants is the look and feel of the breast implant after they have been placed. Many people agree that silicone breast implants are softer and feel more natural than saline breast implants.
Another benefit of silicone breast implants is the reduced risk of post-operative complications, such as rippling. Since the cohesive silicone gel used in the implants is thicker, is it less likely to slosh around, resulting in fewer cases of rippling after the breast implants have been placed. This is more of an issue for patients with less existing breast tissue to cover the implant, so if you have thinner skin or breast tissue, you typically will be happier with silicone.