Saline vs. Silicone Breast Implants?

Saline or silicone implants are used depending on patient preference, the silicone devices feel more natural and are slightly more expensive. It is normal to feel the implants once placed in the breast. Patients with thicker tissues or those who are heavier will feel the device less. Surgical results are excellent with both saline and silicone devices. The main difference is the feel of the implant. It is normal to feel your implant once it is placed under the muscle and deep to the breast tissue. Most people perceive their implants at the lower and lateral aspect of the breast. In this quadrant, the muscle is coursing up toward the shoulder, so a small quadrant is devoid of muscle coverage. Patients who are thinner and flatter will obviously feel their implant more. Both devices have the same outer silicone shell that is not expected to last forever. The saline devices are filled with sterile saline, while the silicone implants are filled with a highly cohesive (non-leaky) silicone gel.

Most people admire and prefer the feel of the silicone implant, which tends to feel and move more like natural breast tissue, while the saline implant feels more like a water balloon. In women who are thinner with less tissue, where the implant is very perceptible, the more natural feeling silicone implant can translate into improved results. The devices have improved over the years with all silicone gel implants containing a highly cohesive and non-leaky gel. This means that silicone gel inside of the implant acts more like a solid unit rather than a liquid – it holds together uniformly and retains the natural give that resembles actual breast tissue. It also helps prevent migration or leakage of the gel in the event of a rupture.

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