If you just so happen to be interested in making your breasts larger or are only looking to replace the fullness you’ve lost over time, you’ll be reassured to know that silicone and saline breast implants are some of the most studied medical devices that are used in the United States.
Americans have always loved the look of full, youthful breasts and that won’t change. Thanks to decades of research and stringent FDA guidelines, women are now able to go big or go home with the piece of mind that breast implants are safe. As a result of all this research, we now have a variety of different types of breast implants to choose from that have been approved by the FDA; not including the different profiles, shapes and textures available. Currently, silicone gel implants are FDA approved and available to women 22 and older; saline filled implants are FDA approved and available for women 18 & older.
Breast implants have undergone many changes over the years in order to meet the safety guidelines of the FDA, as well as the sophisticated expectations of plastic surgeons and their patients. You may wonder what the difference is between the silicone gel breast implants made in the past versus the current generation of silicone gel breast implants.
The first generation of silicone gel breast implants was introduced in the early 1960’s and consisted of a firm gel that was contained in thick shells. The next generation of gel implants came out in the late 1970’s and featured a more fluid gel contained in thinner shells. The new implants were received well by patients and plastic surgeons that viewed the previous silicone gel implants as too firm and too visible.
After years of women undergoing breast augmentation, concerns arose in the mid 1980’s regarding the rupture rate and the safety of these second-generation gel implants. The controversy over whether or not the type of silicone gel used in these implants caused autoimmune diseases and other health problems led manufacturers to create a third generation of gel breast implants. The gel and shells of the new implants were slightly thicker than their predecessor, but still just as soft. Because of safety concerns, the FDA pulled silicone breast implants off the market in 1992. After years of research, the data revealed that these implants did not predispose to autoimmune disease, but did place patients at increased risk of developing capsular contracture (scar tissue build up around the breast). The FDA approved a fourth generation of silicone implants in 2006; long-term data with these implants demonstrated that the safety of these implants is roughly equivalent to saline implants.
The fourth generation of gel implants are still available today, along with the fifth-generation of “gummy bear” gel implants. These implants were given the name of the gummy bear candy due to the thick cohesive silicone gel from which they’re made and the thicker shells that encapsulate it. This newer model is thicker than most other silicone gel implants and is believed to be less likely to rupture or leak. Over 90% of patients in Dr. Jejurikar’s practice choose these implants. The gummy bear implants result in a natural appearance of the breasts, feel soft – similar to real breast tissue, and have less of a tendency to ripple. Furthermore, seven-year data demonstrates a safety profile that’s better than saline breast implants.
If you’d like more information on breast augmentation and the different types of implants available, please call Dr. Jejurikar’s office at (214) 827-2814.