How to Choose Between Silicone Gel and Saline Breast Implants

The FDA recently approved a new generation of silicone gel breast implants, giving women more choices than ever before in breast implant plastic surgery. There are a number of differences between saline and silicone breast implants, which Dr. Enevoldsen will explain thoroughly to you during your consultation. A brief summary of the pros and cons of both types of breast implants follows:

Silicone Gel Breast Implants

Advantages

  • Silicone gel implants feel more like natural breast tissue
  • Silicone implants are less likely to cause the skin around the breast to ripple
  • Silicone gel implants are available in a variety of sizes, profiles, and textures
  • Lifetime replacement guarantee from the manufacturer

Disadvantages

  • Silicone breast implants come pre-filled, meaning that the exact volume must be determined before surgery
  • Because silicone breast implants are pre-filled, the incision will be slightly longer to allow for insertion of the implant
  • If a silicone breast implant ruptures (which is less likely with contemporary silicone implants because of the multi-layered shell), silicone is not absorbed by the body
  • Silicone gel implants are not available for women under the age of 22

Saline Breast Implants

Advantages

  • Saline breast implants are filled after they are inserted so that exact volume can be customized during surgery
  • If a saline implant ruptures, the saline (salt water) filling is safely absorbed by the body
  • Saline implants are available for women of all ages
  • Saline implants are available in a variety of sizes, profiles, and textures

Disadvantages

  • Saline implants are not as soft or natural-feeling as silicone gel implants
  • Saline breast implants are more likely to cause the skin to ripple around the breast

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