March 25, 2013
Dr. Anu Bajaj, M.D.
Breast Surgeon, Patient satisfaction and type of silicone implants

Your Choice: Round Implants or Shaped Implants?

A recent study found that, regardless of selection, silicone implant satisfaction is usually high.

shapesWhen undergoing breast reconstruction, women have many options: Saline or silicone? Implants or autologous (using one’a own tissue)? Immediate or delayed reconstruction?

If you’re overwhelmed by these choices, this recent study of women who chose round vs. anatomical “shaped” silicone implants may ease your decision-making process a bit.

Patients in the study completed the BREAST-Q questionnaire, which evaluated changes in several areas including satisfaction with breasts as well as psychosocial, sexual, and physical well-being and satisfaction with care. The BREAST-Q data showed good overall outcomes with both types of implants.

The study included 65 women who received round implants with a smooth surface and 63 who obtained shaped implants with a textured surface. Data was collected one to four years after breast reconstruction and about 80 percent of women had reconstruction immediately after mastectomy.

As a side note, there was no difference in implant “rippling” between groups. Rippling, or wrinkling, had been a drawback of the first generation of shaped implants. Newer shaped silicone implants with less or no rippling are not yet approved in the United States; clinical trials are underway.

While the two types of implants were equivalent in terms of satisfaction, the women with shaped implants rated their breasts as “firmer.” Such findings help inform women about the expected outcomes of reconstruction, along with introducing shaped implants for widespread use.

Photo: Building blocks by Holger Zscheyge on Flickr