Silicone / Saline Breast Implants


Every year, more and more women are opting for breast augmentation surgery in order to enlarge their breasts. Also increasing, is the number of women who are undergoing the procedure in order to correct disproportionate breasts or repair breast deformities. Typically silicone or saline breast implants are used in any of these cases.

Silicone Breast Implants
Silicone breast implants are smooth, soft and feel like a semisolid gel. Many women prefer the softer and more natural feel of silicone implants and they are also less likely to ripple.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) removed silicone breast implants from the market after lawsuits were filed alleging these implants increased a woman's risk of autoimmune and connective tissue diseases. The agency then carried out a thorough investigation that could not establish any link between silicone breast implants and connective tissue or autoimmune disease. As a result, in 2006, the implants were re-approved for use.

In the rare case that an implant gets ruptures, silicone gel may stay inside the implant shell or leak outside of the shell. The FDA has therefore recommended that women undergo a MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) 3 years post surgery, then every 2 years to check for ruptures.

Silicone breast implants can be placed using various implant placement positions, including:

  • subglandular (over the muscle)
  • partial submuscular (the top 2/3 is covered by the muscle)
  • complete submuscular (under the muscle) 

Saline Breast Implants
Saline breast implants are available in different sizes, shapes and profiles. The surface of the outer shell may be either smooth or textured. Like silicone implants, saline implants can also be placed in the following positions:

  • subglandular
  • partial submuscular
  • complete submuscular  

Saline implants typically are placed in the submuscular position to decrease the appearance of rippling.

The incision used for the procedure may be inframammary (the crease where the breast and chest come together), periareolar (nipple), transaxillary (armpit) or TUBA (belly button).

In the case of a rupture, the saline (or salt water) from the implant gets absorbed by the body. These implants are more likely to ripple or wrinkle when the saline-fill and the elastic silicone polymer shell interact. Such effect may be evident in women with thin skin and very little breast tissue.

Dr. Davidson will explore all the options with you during your consultation. He will recommend a type and placement of the implant based on your individual body type as well as your goals and expectations.