Silicone Breast Implants

Silicone breast implants were approved for general use in December of 2006. Our surgeons do utilize silicone breast implants and have extensive experience with them. Silicone breast implants are not for everyone. These implants have benefits and risks as well.

In general, silicone breast implants provide a softer feel. They also tend to wrinkle less than a saline implant. Compare saline and silicone implants.

Controversy over the safety of silicone breast implants involves the fact that deflations of the implant are difficult to detect. If a silicone breast implant deflates, the silicone stays in the area of the breast. Over time, silicone can migrate into the breast or surrounding areas. Our surgeons believe current scientific evidence does not suggest that silicone is a health problem. Silicone can cause some local problems in the breast if it leaks from the implant. Scar tissue can form, or granulomas (firm collections of silicone) can form, which can detract from how the breast feels or mimic breast cancer. These problems are rare, and usually are discovered when silicone has freely leaked for some time.

Silicone implant leakage can be difficult to diagnose. Patients and doctors usually cannot feel when a silicone implant leaks. Mammograms do not detect silicone implant leaks very readily. The only method to detect silicone implant leaks is with a test called an MRI. The FDA has recommended that women with silicone implants undergo an evaluation with an MRI every two years. This is not necessary with a saline implant leak, because the saline is harmlessly absorbed. Deflations are obvious because as the saline is absorbed, the breast loses volume.

Comparison Chart of Saline and Silicone Implants