One of the frequent question I am asked by patients interested in breast augmentation surgery is which type of implant is better silicone vs. saline. Before I answer that question I will go over some of the pros and cons of each type of implant.
Silicone has a more natural feel and look. There is less of a chance of rippling. Silicone or saline breast implants can rupture. When silicone implants rupture only a small amount of silicone leaks out. The women does not recognize the implant has ruptured. Therefore she has silent rupture. Usually the leaking implant is detected when the women undergoes a mammogram or some other test. There have been extensive scientific studies evaluating silicone breast implants none of which have produced any evidence that silicone implants are harmful even ones that have leaked.
When saline implants leak the women knows right away and calls her doctor the next day. The saline that leaks out is absorbed by the body and is not harmful at all. Some of the cons of saline implants are less natural feel and more of a chance of rippling. Saline breast implants still can achieve a very good result. Also of the advantages of saline implants is in some women with two different size breasts that implants can be filled to two different volumes to make the breast more symmetric in size after surgery.
Frequently I am asked which implant would you recommend for your wife. If my wife wanted breast implants I would tell her to get silicone breast implants because of the more natural feel and look however I would support whichever choice she made.
Written by Dr. Mohan Pillai - Board Certified Plastic Surgeon