We strongly recommend you choose an implant type with your surgeon, who will be able to match the right type to accomplish your desired results. All available implants are considered good, safe choices. However, this article will explain the pros and cons of each of the three main types of breast implants so you can get an idea of what might be the best fit for you.
The current lifetime risk of BIA-ALCL in the U.S. is unknown, but estimates have ranged between estimated to be between 1 in 70,000 to 1 in 500,000 women with breast implants according to MD Anderson.[73] Certain geographic locations have demonstrated variable risks. For instance, a December 2016 update from the Therapeutic Goods Administration of Australia and New Zealand reported a risk of 1:1,000 to 1:10,000 for textured implants.".[71] To date (2017), there has not been a case of BIAL reported where the patient had only implantation of smooth shell breast implants or a textured tissue expander that was exchanged for a smooth implant. The paucity of cases reported in Asian populations has raised the possibility that there may be a range of genetic susceptibility to the phenomena, or alternatively merely reflect differences in how cases are identified and reported.

Silicone-filled Breast Implants. Silicone-filled breast implants are filled with a silicone gel. Over the years, the consistency of this silicone filling has changed. The first silicone breast implants were filled with a very thin, oily silicone. Currently, the silicone used in implants is a gel that is less likely to leak out of the shell if it ruptures. This gel is referred to as "cohesive." Some breast implants — called gummy bear breast implants — are even more cohesive, or "form-stable," and have the consistency of a gummy bear, thus the nickname.


Dr. Larry Fan is a Harvard educated, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon in San Francisco, CA. He is a Master Artist who is known for creating beautiful, stunning, and natural results. Dr. Fan has been named One of America's Top Plastic Surgeons for the past 10 years running and has received several national awards for his work in Plastic Surgery. He has successfully performed more than 10,000 cosmetic procedures of the face, breasts, and body over a 20 year period. Dr Fan has been an invited speaker at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons, and has been featured in national media outlets such as CNN, NBC, and ABC.


When a silicone breast implant ruptures it usually does not deflate, yet the filler gel does leak from it, which can migrate to the implant pocket; therefore, an intracapsular rupture (in-capsule leak) can become an extracapsular rupture (out-of-capsule leak), and each occurrence is resolved by explantation. Although the leaked silicone filler-gel can migrate from the chest tissues to elsewhere in the woman's body, most clinical complications are limited to the breast and armpit areas, usually manifested as granulomas (inflammatory nodules) and axillary lymphadenopathy (enlarged lymph glands in the armpit area).[41][42][43]
In 1988, twenty-six years after the 1962 introduction of breast implants filled with silicone gel, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigated breast implant failures and the subsequent complications, and re-classified breast implant devices as Class III medical devices, and required from manufacturers the documentary data substantiating the safety and efficacy of their breast implant devices.[113] In 1992, the FDA placed silicone-gel breast implants in moratorium in the U.S., because there was “inadequate information to demonstrate that breast implants were safe and effective”. Nonetheless, medical access to silicone-gel breast implant devices continued for clinical studies of post-mastectomy breast reconstruction, the correction of congenital deformities, and the replacement of ruptured silicone-gel implants. The FDA required from the manufacturers the clinical trial data, and permitted their providing breast implants to the breast augmentation patients for the statistical studies required by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.[113] In mid–1992, the FDA approved an adjunct study protocol for silicone-gel filled implants for breast reconstruction patients, and for revision-surgery patients. Also in 1992, the Dow Corning Corporation, a silicone products and breast implant manufacturer, announced the discontinuation of five implant-grade silicones, but would continue producing 45 other, medical-grade, silicone materials—three years later, in 1995, the Dow Corning Corporation went bankrupt when it faced large class action lawsuits claiming a variety of illnesses.[113]
The study Safety and Effectiveness of Mentor’s MemoryGel Implants at 6 Years (2009), which was a branch study of the U.S. FDA's core clinical trials for primary breast augmentation surgery patients, reported low device-rupture rates of 1.1 per cent at 6-years post-implantation.[49] The first series of MRI evaluations of the silicone breast implants with thick filler-gel reported a device-rupture rate of 1 percent, or less, at the median 6-year device-age.[50] Statistically, the manual examination (palpation) of the woman is inadequate for accurately evaluating if a breast implant has ruptured. The study, The Diagnosis of Silicone Breast implant Rupture: Clinical Findings Compared with Findings at Magnetic Resonance Imaging (2005), reported that, in asymptomatic patients, only 30 per cent of the ruptured breast implants are accurately palpated and detected by an experienced plastic surgeon, whereas MRI examinations accurately detected 86 per cent of breast implant ruptures.[51] Therefore, the U.S. FDA recommended scheduled MRI examinations, as silent-rupture screenings, beginning at the 3-year-mark post-implantation, and then every two years, thereafter.[22] Nonetheless, beyond the U.S., the medical establishments of other nations have not endorsed routine MRI screening, and, in its stead, proposed that such a radiologic examination be reserved for two purposes: (i) for the woman with a suspected breast implant rupture; and (ii) for the confirmation of mammographic and ultrasonic studies that indicate the presence of a ruptured breast implant.[52]

Mentor's Spectrum® post-operatively adjustable saline breast implants allow the physician to adjust the size of the breast implant for up to 6 months after breast augmentation surgery. One of the more difficult decisions you'll face in breast augmentation is deciding what size breast implant best fits your body. The Spectrum® implants give you and your surgeon more flexibility over the end result of your breast enlargement procedure.


In 1997, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) appointed the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to investigate the potential risks of operative and post-operative complications from the emplacement of silicone breast implants. The IOM's review of the safety and efficacy of silicone gel-filled breast implants, reported that the "evidence suggests diseases or conditions, such as connective tissue diseases, cancer, neurological diseases, or other systemic complaints or conditions are no more common in women with breast implants, than in women without implants" subsequent studies and systemic review found no causal link between silicone breast implants and disease.[113]
From the first half of the twentieth century, physicians used other substances as breast implant fillers—ivory, glass balls, ground rubber, ox cartilage, Terylene wool, gutta-percha, Dicora, polyethylene chips, Ivalon (polyvinyl alcohol—formaldehyde polymer sponge), a polyethylene sac with Ivalon, polyether foam sponge (Etheron), polyethylene tape (Polystan) strips wound into a ball, polyester (polyurethane foam sponge) Silastic rubber, and teflon-silicone prostheses.[111]
Saline breast implants are filled with sterile saltwater. This implant type is recommended for women who do not wish to have silicone implants as well as some women who desire the 'Baywatch' look with a high degree of upper pole fullness and projection. In the right patient, saline implants can also look very natural. Saline implants are generally less popular today than silicone implants.
There is no set expiry date on breast implants, but if there are issues with the implants, meaning no structural issues then they could last forever. There is a common misconception that breast implants are only good for 10 years, however, that is only a mathematical average of how long implants last before potentially having complications. There are some cases where patients with implants experience complications within the first year and there are some cases where patients don’t experience any complications until 20 years. This is where the mathematical average of 10 years comes into play. It is important to remember that implants are not infallible. They are human made devices that do sometimes have defects which results in a leak, tear, or rupture. In general, if a patient is able to make it past the first two years without any issues with their implants, there is no need to be concerned about the life expectancy of your implant as it is possible they will last for as long as you want to. Generally, patients with implants will come back 10-15 years later to either change, remove or reduce their implants. Certainly, implants can be adjusted and changed if and when necessary, but if you’re not having any issues with the implants then you likely won’t need to do surgery in 10 years you can leave them alone.

the third technological development was the double lumen breast implant device, a double-cavity prosthesis composed of a silicone breast implant contained within a saline breast implant. The two-fold, technical goal was: (i) the cosmetic benefits of silicone-gel (the inner lumen) enclosed in saline solution (the outer lumen); (ii) a breast implant device the volume of which is post-operatively adjustable. Nevertheless, the more complex design of the double-lumen breast implant suffered a device-failure rate greater than that of single-lumen breast implants. The contemporary versions of second-generation breast implant devices (presented in 1984) are the "Becker Expandable" models of breast implant, which are primarily used for breast reconstruction.
As with any medical/surgical treatment, individual results may vary. Only a surgeon/physician can determine whether reconstruction or augmentation>is an appropriate course of treatment. The following are general adverse events associated with breast implant surgery: Device Rupture, Capsular contracture, Infection, Hematoma/Seroma, Pain, Reoperation, Implant removal, changes in Nipple and Breast Sensation, unsatisfactory results, breast-feeding complications. Other reported conditions are listed in the Product Insert Data Sheet (PIDS). See full list in the PIDS for the product information. These potential adverse events, including contraindications, warnings, and precautions need to be discussed with your doctor prior to surgery.

My breast have always been too large for my tastes, and often cause me back issues, and I’m considering getting a reduction. Your article had some great information about different breast surgeries, and how they work, and I liked how you detailed the possible reasons a person should get breast reduction surgery. I’ve always had posture issues, always have back, should, and neck pain, and can only wear certain clothes due to my bust size, so according to your post, breast reduction surgery may be a good idea for me.

I needed very little convincing before making my way down to the Cadogan Clinic, one of the very best locations in London (might I add) to speak to Nurse Libbie Wallace, a master in her field. After filling in a short consultation form, Nurse Libbie asks me how old I am. After replying 28, she chuckles a little, but continues… I’m not the youngest client she’s had walk through the door, but she does tell me that she would only ever treat those that actually can benefit from the treatment, ‘It’s important that I manage patients expectations’.


Dr. Rahban estimates that 30 percent of the errors made in breast augmentation come down to incorrect size selection. “The most important thing with breast augmentation is to make sure that the implant you select is conservative and not too large for the size of your anatomy.” It’s a red flag if your doctor doesn’t seem concerned with advising you about the maximum size you can reach before developing medical complications.
Make sure your cosmetic surgeon is board certified; this ensures that he or she is specifically trained and experienced in cosmetic surgery and that your procedure will take place in an accredited facility, which is essential for your safety. Finally, don’t choose a cosmetic surgeon based on price alone. Your safety & results are too important. Most cosmetic surgeons offer financing options to help patients budget procedure costs.

When it comes to determining the prominence and size to utilize for the breast augmentation, the first step is to determine what are your goals/desires for the end result. Once you have decided on what you would like the final result to look like, the surgeon will make recommendations and suggestions based on your body type and build as to what they know will be able to achieve your goal, or get you as close to them as safely possible. An individual may want a specific size, but the surgeon will be able to tell if that is a realistic option for that individual or not. For example, if the patient’s chest is small and the breast tissue is tight, it will not be recommended to use a large implant as it will not fit. This is why a surgeon with clinical experience is beneficial, because they will be able to help you understand and guide you towards the best implant for your body. It is not uncommon for patients to become focused on details such as the actual volume of CC’s, however, you need to keep in mind that there are many varying factors that have to be considered by the surgeon when recommending the best implant for your body so try not to get too caught up in those details and trust your surgeon.


There’s definitely no denying, the B word has definitely been a talking point of late, not just in the media, but within my close circle of friends too. Would you? Wouldn’t you? Have you? Has she? I promise it’s not as ‘Real Housewives of Cheshire’ as it sounds... But whilst I'm only 28, the reality is that the constant stream of late nights, binge drinking (sorry Mum) and falling asleep with a full face of makeup on, are all starting to show their effects. 

There are two types of breast implants approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA): silicone-filled and saline-filled. They come in various sizes and shapes, and with two types of shells: textured shells and smooth shells. A type of silicone-filled implant with a thicker filling, called a form-stable highly cohesive implant, or "gummy bear" breast implant, is currently under investigation and may one day provide another option for women undergoing breast augmentation with implants.
Post-operative patient surveys about mental health and quality-of-life, reported improved physical health, physical appearance, social life, self-confidence, self-esteem, and satisfactory sexual functioning. Furthermore, the women reported long-term satisfaction with their breast implant outcomes; some despite having suffered medical complications that required surgical revision, either corrective or aesthetic. Likewise, in Denmark, 8 per cent of breast augmentation patients had a pre-operative history of psychiatric hospitalization.[3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]

Since experienced surgeons are aware of these issues with saline breast implants and their need for eventual replacement, they opt to place them under the chest muscle. The chest muscle works as an extra layer of tissue over the implant, which makes for a smoother transition from the chest wall to the implant. The finished product is a more seamless transition versus a more visible and abrupt change when the implant is not placed below the pectoral muscle. As for gel breast implants, they can also be safely placed below the pretorial muscle if that is a viable option for the patient since replacement and wrinkling is less common with this type of implant.
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