The technical goal of saline-implant technology was a physically less invasive surgical technique for emplacing an empty breast implant device through a smaller surgical incision. In surgical praxis, after having emplaced the empty breast implants to the implant pockets, the plastic surgeon then filled each device with saline solution, and, because the required insertion-incisions are short and small, the resultant incision-scars will be smaller and shorter than the surgical scars usual to the long incisions required for inserting pre-filled, silicone-gel implants.
In 1999, the Institute of Medicine published the Safety of Silicone Breast Implants (1999) study that reported no evidence that saline-filled and silicone-gel filled breast implant devices caused systemic health problems; that their use posed no new health or safety risks; and that local complications are “the primary safety issue with silicone breast implants”, in distinguishing among routine and local medical complications and systemic health concerns.”
Both saline-filled breast implants and silicone-filled implants have an outer shell composed of silicone elastomer. This shell is basically a flexible envelope that contains the implant filling. In the case of some anatomically shaped implants, the shell also gives the implants shape. Some models of implants have a "double lumen." This is an elastomer envelope inside of another elastomer envelope (sort of like double-bagging your groceries) which may reduce the risk of implant rupture.
It is certainly possible to lift a breast without changing the volume or removing any tissue, however, the breast will sometimes appear smaller after this procedure due to its position. It is also possible to reduce breast volume without lifting the tissue (usually via liposuction) but all reductions that are performed by making incisions will also include a lift.
Your surgeon can take photos of your breasts and detail your physical symptoms caused by enlarged breasts in a letter. Get in touch with your health insurer early and make sure you understand exactly what they will pay for. For example, will insurance cover such things as lab costs or anesthesiologist fees? Asking in advance will help prevent surprise costs after the surgery.
Saline-filled Breast Implants. Saline-filled breast implants are filled with sterile saline (salt water). They come in both smooth and textured shells and can be round or anatomically (tear-drop) shaped. Saline breast implants are also available in low and high profiles, and in many sizes. A saline-filled breast implant is usually empty before implantation. The doctor moves it into place during your surgery, and then fills it. The saline is administered via a process that ensures the implants remain sterile.
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