Silicone Gel Breast Implants – Options
*Individual results may vary
Now is probably the best time ever to consider breast augmentation. Almost everyone nowadays is choosing silicone gel filled breast implants over the older saline filled breast implants, for a much more natural look and feel. Our Long Island practice offers all the latest options in silicone gel implants. Dr. Epstein prefers the Natrelle® brand of implants, made by Allergan. He has been using them since silicone gel implants made their re-emergence in the US market in 2006. They are of the highest quality, and the manufacturer stands by their products. During your consultation with Dr. Epstein, he will discuss each option in detail and will determine what breast implant is best to achieve your desired results.
Breast Implant Options
Why are there so many options? The answer to that lies in your own preference as a patient. Let’s start with the basic premise for silicone gel implants: cohesivity. A substance is “cohesive” if the molecules that make up that substance want to stay together. Saline is NOT cohesive. If it spills on the floor, its molecules scatter all over the place. There is no tendency for the saline molecules to stay together. Saline implants look and feel like a hard bag of water, sloshing around inside. Silicone is cohesive. If you drop silicone on the floor, it stays together as a single “glop” of gel. Now, cohesiveness or “cohesivity” can vary from one gel to another, just like not all brands of toothpaste have the same cohesiveness. The more cohesive, the more the molecules want to stay together and resist deformation, and therefore the gel is more “firm”. So, more cohesive, more firm.
silicone gel implants
Is firmness a good thing? Well, the firmer the gel, the more it holds its shape. The softer the gel, the less it holds its shape. The caveat here is that the softer the gel, the more it will resemble the “feel” of natural breast tissue. So a more cohesive implant will feel firmer and hold its shape better, whereas a less cohesive implant will feel softer, better resembling the feel of a natural breast but will not hold its shape as well as a more cohesive silicone gel implant. So as you increase cohesiveness, you get better preservation of shape, but at the expense of softness. And if you decrease cohesiveness, you get less preservation of shape, but increase the softness of the implant. It’s a trade-off that you balance based upon your personal preferences. There is no wrong decision here. You will achieve great results with any of the silicone gel implants, but you can optimize that result for your own personal preference now with the different options currently available to you.*
Choosing the right breast implant
So which is best for you? That is a matter of personal preference. Is shape more important than feel (softness), or is it the other way around? That isn’t to say that you totally sacrifice one for the other, you can get great shape and feel with any of the silicone gel implants, but in order to optimize one, you may need to give way on the other. Feel the difference in the implants. The more natural tissue that you have to start with, the less you will be able to perceive the difference in firmness when the implant is inside your breast. A breast with more tissue to start with may also mitigate the ability to see the difference in shape as well. When I say shape, I am speaking of not only round versus teardrop, but also round versus round where one implant is soft and the silicone gel tends to settle to the bottom of the implant shell (bag), leaving it empty up top, versus a firmer round implant with more upper implant fullness and less at the bottom. Don’t get yourself crazy here – this is where Dr. Epstein, an experienced breast implant surgeon, will listen to your desires and help you better navigate through all the options to find the implant that best suits your needs and goals to produce breasts that look and feel as you desire that they should.
Types of Breast Implants
These implants are not new – they have been available in other countries around the world for several years…
- Inspira® Responsive Non Gummy
- Inspira® SoftTouch Gummy
- Inspira® Cohesive Gummy
- Natrelle® 410 Anatomical (teardrop) Gummy
Watch Dr. Epstein Discuss Different Implant Options
Inspira® responsive non-gummy
The Inspira® Responsive Non Gummy Breast Implant is an excellent implant. The gel is the least cohesive among the Inspira® implant family, which makes it the softest. On the other hand, it does not hold its shape as well as the other “Gummy” (form-stable) implants. This implant works well when there is adequate breast tissue of good or better quality. While rippling is far less frequent with silicone gel implants than saline ones, with this implant, there is a little more rippling than seen with the Gummy options. This imiplant is not recommend for women with very thin, stretched out, compromised breast tissue.
Inspira® SoftTouch Gummy
The Inspira® SoftTouch Breast Implant is the most recent and newly introduced implant released in April 2017. This implant is still cohesive enough to be considered a “gummy”, but its cohesiveness and firmness lie in between the Inspira® Responsive Non-Gummy and the Inspira® Cohesive Gummy implants. It is an excellent compromise between softness and firmness and suitable for most situations.
Inspira® Cohesive Gummy
This type of implant is the most cohesive of all the Inspira® implants, making it the most “form-stable” which allows it to retain its shape. This implant will yield the greatest degree of upper breast (upper “pole”) fullness and the least amount of downward migration of silicone gel, or bottoming out. This implant is excellent when there is very compromised, thin tissue as shape is best preserved with the least amount of rippling.
Natrelle® 410 Anatomical (teardrop) Gummy
This implant uses the same gel as the Inspira® Cohesive Gummy, but in a teardrop shape. This implant produces a very natural upper breast slope blending nicely into the middle portion of the breast. This better simulates the natural shape of the human breast. Whether to select this implant or a round shape is a judgment call on the part of the patient. If you prefer a more natural, teardrop-shaped breast, this may be your implant. If you still prefer the look of a round implant, then you might want to consider the other options listed above.
Teardrop Implants Before and After
It’s all about choices…
Now there are several excellent options available to give you the look and feel that you so desire and deserve. Dr. Epstein will be happy to discuss these options with you and help you to select the one that will give you the breasts of your dreams….