Choosing the Right Breast Implant Size
By Patricia Berbari on September 25, 2014
When you visit our Gatineau plastic surgery center, you can expect personalized treatment that is tailored to your body’s specific needs. This is especially true of breast augmentation, which may utilize any combination of factors such as implant size, shape, texture, and filling. While each option and its effects should be scrutinized, implant size tends to be at the forefront of discussion. After all, the size of an implant plays a large role in a patient’s long-term satisfaction, and choosing the right size is equally important for one’s comfort and general well-being. Whether you are just beginning to consider a potential augmentation or have already met with Dr. Berbari, knowing how to choose the right implant size is one more step toward a successful procedure.
Cosmetic Considerations for Implant Size
When evaluating the options for breast augmentation, size is often the first factor considered. After all, most women seek augmentation for the very purpose of upgrading their cup size. However, it can be difficult to determine which size is right for you without a professional consultation and visual representation. By visiting our office, you see exactly what each implant size looks like and how dramatically it will increase your individual curves. Not every implant affects everyone in the same way, and some body types may not be able to support certain sizes in the first place.
For instance, women with smaller natural breasts can only augment their size so much before the breasts will begin to conform to the implant’s shape and texture. This is particularly true with larger saline implants, which tend to produce rounder and firmer breasts if relatively little breast tissue is present. Likewise, women with larger breasts may need larger implants than expected if they want a noticeable upgrade. By expressing your cosmetic goals to your doctor, you can gain professional insight as to which implant size and volume will best meet your expectations.
Smaller vs. Larger Implants
Aside from aesthetic matters, implant size should also be considered with regard to one’s health. Although large implants may be appealing to some women, a modest upgrade may carry multiple benefits for some patients. Notably, smaller implants decrease the risk of:
- Capsular contracture: All implants result in some formation of scar tissue, but when tissue continues to form around the implant, it may harden and constrict, resulting in tightness, discomfort, and potential rupture. Smaller implants reduce this risk, along with the need for revision surgery.
- Double bubble: When an implant is too large or heavy, it may sink below the breast’s natural crease, creating a deeper pocket and an extra “bubble” below the breast. This requires revision surgery to restore the breast’s normal appearance and the location of the implant.
- Discomfort: When a woman’s breasts are too large for her frame to support, it can lead to long-term discomfort. Specifically, she may experience chronic back pain, soreness, and bra straps that dig into her shoulders.
Of course, large implants will not necessarily result in any such problems. Moreover, if a woman errs on the side of safety and undergoes a very small increase in size, she may very well wish to have a second procedure to further augment her breasts. Ultimately, patients should settle on a size that complements the body both cosmetically and medically.
Additional Considerations for Implant Size
There is much interplay between the factors of a breast augmentation. Size should not be decided independently of other decisions, since the results of treatment are affected by a nuanced combination of all factors. This includes:
- Implant type: Silicone and saline implants are affected differently by size, often making one a better choice for certain patients and their priorities.
- Implant shape: Round implants are most common, and can often be trusted to produce a satisfactory result. However, some patients may find a teardrop-shaped implant preferable.
- Implant volume: The size of an implant’s shell is different than its volume, or the amount of actual filling in it. Size and volume should be considered together in order to meet a patient’s cosmetic goals.
- Implant profile: An implant’s profile determines how far outward it projects from the body. High profiles give a breast greater fullness of the upper pole, whereas lower profiles create a fuller base and cleavage, independent of the implant’s size.
When deciding on your specific implants, be sure to discuss all of these topics with your doctor to ensure that you receive implants that match your specific criteria for satisfying augmentation results.
Schedule a Consultation
Meet with Dr. Berbari to discuss your goals for surgery and learn about your various implant options. Contact us to inquire further and set up your initial consultation.
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“Dr. Berbari is an excellent doctor - the best there is.” Carol, Plastic Surgery Patient