Are you considering breast augmentation? You probably have many questions about what implants are right for you. Here at Aristocrat Plastic Surgery and MedAesthetics, we are excited to offer the Ideal Implant. A newer implant that offers the feel of silicone with the safety of saline. Contact our offices today to learn more about this revolutionary new implant.
WHAT IS THE IDEAL IMPLANT?
With roughly over 300,000 procedures being performed in the United States in 2017 alone, (https://www.plasticsurgery.org/documents/News/Statistics/2017/plastic-surgery-statistics-infographic-2017.pdf) breast augmentation is still the number one cosmetic surgery performed by plastic and cosmetic surgeons. If you’ve ever researched getting breast augmentation yourself, it can be overwhelming to determine which implants are right for you.
For many years there have been only two options, with either standard saline implants or silicone gel implants being offered. After a 14 year ban, silicone gel implants were re-released to the market in 2006 with improvements being made to the original structure. Silicone quickly became the best option for a natural look and feel while improvements to saline implants remained stagnant. Saline implants were the less desired implant by women and plastic surgeons alike due to the unnatural look and feel, until the Ideal Implant.
Approved by the FDA in November 2014 after 10 years of development by cosmetic and plastic surgeons, the Ideal implant is a new, redesigned saline breast implant that is different than any other implants on the market. The Ideal Implant was created for women who want the look and feel of silicone implants but don’t want the worry of having silicone inside their body. The Ideal implant is what is called a “Structured Breast Implant”.
WHAT MAKES THE IDEAL IMPLANT SO DIFFERENT?
What makes the Ideal Implant so vastly different than traditional saline is its unique, baffle structured shell. The Ideal Implant contains two lumens, which are filled with sterile saline, in a multiple shell structure. The baffle structure floats within the outer lumen and prevents saline from moving freely within the lumen. The baffles have one to three shells, containing small incisions within the shells, so saline can move easily and unrestricted between the shells and incisions in the implant, resulting in a more natural feel and overall look.
Essentially, it’s a saline implant within a saline implant. The Ideal Implant can give you a similar look and feel of a silicone implant without the concerns that some woman may have with a silicone implant.
BENEFITS OF THE IDEAL IMPLANT
The benefits of the Ideal implant are numerous when compared to traditional silicone implants and include:
- Saline is used which is safe for the body in case of implant ruptures
- Silent ruptures worries are reduced as you will know visually if your implant has ruptured
- Ideal implants have lower instances of rupture
- Lower instances of capsule contracture
- Incision size is less than that of a silicone implant
- MRIs not required to detect ruptures (as necessary with silicone implants)
- Ideal implants have an overall smoother surface for a more natural look and feel
- No worries of silicone gel attaching to surrounding tissues in the case of an implant rupture
TRADITIONAL SALINE VS THE IDEAL IMPLANT
Standard saline breast implants are essentially a water balloon. There are no chambers inside of a traditional saline implant and saline is allowed to freely move from the top to the bottom of the implant. Because of this many may complain of rippling or wrinkling occurring with traditional saline implants. Wrinkling and rippling become harder to disguise in women who have less of their own natural breast tissue as the implant shell can’t be hidden under fat or tissue.
When saline is allowed to move openly within the shell, it can cause a disproportionate distribution of the fluid which further causes rippling and wrinkling to become more apparent and compromise the structure of the implant which can lead to ruptures. Some women even say they can feel the water inside their implants moving from side to side adding to the unnatural feel.
This is where a standard saline implant and the Ideal Implant are greatly different. Due to its multi-layer design, the Ideal Implant reduces the wrinkling and rippling you see with traditional saline implants. The top of the implant is domed shaped to help create an anatomical look and feel, with their internal structure helping them feel more like a natural breast opposed to standard saline. Saline is able to move between slits in the baffle design but not the same “sloshing” around you may feel with a traditional saline implant.
SILICONE IMPLANTS VS THE IDEAL IMPLANT
There are many types of silicone gel implants offered by plastic surgeons today with the latest and greatest is the “gummy bear” implant. Approved by the FDA in 2013, this implant’s cohesive gel and more anatomical, teardrop shape make it the preferred implant for women looking for a natural look and feel. Even when cut, the cohesive gel doesn’t leak out of the implant shell for added safety. This cohesive gel is safer than previous silicone implants as there is less risk of silicone leaking into surrounding tissues. Even though the risks are small, there is a chance of silicone granulomas to form in other parts of the body if a silicone implant ruptures.
Ruptures of a silicone implant are generally referred to as “silent ruptures” because when a silicone implant ruptures, it can not be confirmed aesthetically, usually produces no symptoms, and requires further imaging to confirm. It is important if your implant has ruptured to have them replaced as soon as possible to avoid the rare occurrence of silicone leaking into tissues surrounding the breast pocket.
Removing a silicone breast implant can be a more in-depth procedure if silicone has leaked out of the implant shell and into the body due to its sticky, viscous texture. Because of this, many women may still feel uncomfortable with the idea of having silicone gel inside their body or don’t want the maintenance that comes with a silicone implant.
It is important to note that silicone gel implants have been deemed safe medical devices by the FDA, however, they still recommend women receive an MRI 3 years after implantation and every 2 years thereafter for the lifetime of the implant to identify possible ruptures.
This does not mean that you will experience an implant rupture yourself. No breast implant is lasting and when having breast augmentation surgery you can expect to have surgery in the future as breast implant are not lifelong devices.
CAPSULAR CONTRACTURE AND BREAST IMPLANTS
One of the biggest worries for any patient considering undergoing breast augmentation surgery is having complications following their procedure. Following surgery, your body will naturally form scar tissue around the implant, which can prevent the implants from moving or shifting. However, with capsular contracture, the scar tissue becomes uncomfortably hard and will begin to squeeze and tighten around the implant.
Capsular contracture is one of the most common post-implant complications affecting roughly 10% of people with breast implants (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4579163/). Usually, it will occur during the initial healing process post-procedure, although roughly 75% of cases happen during the first two years after breast implant surgery. Capsular contracture can happen at any time for the duration the implant is inside the body and is graded on a 4 level scale.
No signs or symptoms, implants remain soft and natural and the scar tissue forming around the implant doesn’t cause the shape, texture or size of the breast to change.
Can cause small aesthetic changes. In most cases, the breast will not change in shape but may feel more firm than usual.
Obvious aesthetic changes. Breast and nipples may change in shape and the breast will feel firmer than normal.
The breast will be hard and obvious changes in firmness will appear. Patients with grade 4 capsular contracture will also experience breast pain or soreness as the scar tissue hardens around the implant.
Rest assured, at Aristocrat Plastic Surgery and MedAesthetics we can help you with any complications that may arise from your breast augmentation. We offer ASPEN therapy for rehabilitation post breast augmentation to help improve capsular contracture on patients who are experiencing this complication.
Breast augmentation is not a procedure to take lightly. If you’ve been considering breast augmentation we encourage you to come to our offices in Manhattan or Great Neck, NY for a free consultation to discuss any questions or concerns with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Kevin Tehrani. Dr. Tehrani can help you decide which implant options are best for you.