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Saline vs Silicone

Should I choose Saline or Silicone implants?

In many ways, this may be your most important decision once you have chosen to undergo breast augmentation. Each of these implants, Saline or Silicone, has distinct advantages and disadvantages. It is essential that you carefully weigh the benefits and risks of each when making your decision.

Saline Implants

The human body is composed of about 70% saline. Saline, or salt water is the prime component of all living beings. It is for this reason that Saline implants clearly have the advantage when safety is the first priority. If the implant breaks or leaks, for any reason, it is not harmful to the body. The body will simply absorb the saline, with no harmful side-effects. The contents of the implant are not poisonous to the body, thus making this the safest type of implant to be used.

The saline implants should almost always be placed behind the chest muscle, the Pectoralis Major. This, in addition to the breast itself, will add an additional layer of the patient's own body tissue over the implant to give a more natural and softer final result. This is where expertise and excellent surgical skill are essential. Los Angeles plastic Surgeon, Dr. Warren Lent, pays special attention to the proper creation of the "pocket" in which the implant will be placed. By creating the correct "pocket", the results when using saline implants, can be gorgeous. The muscle does not cover the implant on the lower, outer aspect of the breast. Thus, if the breast tissue is very thin the implant can sometimes be palpable in this one spot.

Obviously, if the implant were to leak or break, for any reason, that breast would be smaller. This would require a procedure to replace the damaged implant. This procedure is not as extensive as the original Breast Augmentation, as the old implant can be replaced with a new implant in the same location.

In summary, Saline implants are the safest implants currently in use and with proper surgical technique, a beautiful, stunning, natural appearing and soft breast enhancement can be achieved.

Silicone Implants

Silicone implants are composed of a hardened Silicone outer shell, which is filled with a Silicone gel. Silicone gel has a relatively soft feel that mimics the consistency of the normal human breast. This accounts for the popularity of this implant.

Unfortunately, despite how soft a Silicone implant may feel when held outside the body, once placed into the breast it has a significantly higher rate of problems when compared to Saline filled implants. The human body reacts to all substances it considers foreign by two mechanisms; one, which isolates the item with scar tissue, and one, which attempts to remove the item from the body. Silicone is not naturally found in the body, thus it is treated as a foreign substance. The outer shell of the implant has tiny, microscopic pores on its surface, through which the Silicone molecules from the gel will leak out. This happens in very small amounts, but is a constant, continuous occurrence to which the body will react. The usual reaction is the formation of scar tissue, commonly referred to as a Capsular Contracture. Capsular contractures are known to harden and deform the breast. Although this process can occur with Saline implants, the incidence is dramatically higher with the use of Silicone implants. This process can still occur even with the newest Silicone implants. Of course, should a Silicone implant break or rupture, the body is exposed to a massive amount of Silicone, which only heightens the risks. Prospective patients must carefully weigh the pros and cons of each of these implants.