Breast Implants and Their Safety

Saline and silicone gel are the two types of breast implants prevalent in U.S. Both implants are made of a silicone outer shell. The difference is what is inside.

Sterile seawater fills the saline implants, and silicone gel provides the shape for silicone gel breast implants.

Breast Implants Made with Silicone Gel

It was 1962 when the first silicone gel breast implants were launched.

During the 1980s, the popularity of silicone gel breast implants skyrocketed, as did the number of reports about its alleged hazards.

An increasing number of individuals believe that ruptured silicone gel implants are associated with an increased risk of immunological problems (such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and other conditions). Some women have stated that their symptoms have subsided as a result of having the implants removed. Some people have brought lawsuits against the producers of implantable devices.

In 1992, FDA investigated risks for women undergoing reconstruction following breast cancer surgery.

The use of saline breast implants was mandatory for the following 14 years for women who desired breast enhancement.

The FDA cleared the sale of some silicone gel breast implants in 2006 after reviewing the literature and concluding that there was no link between silicone gel implants and illness.

Which Breast Implants Are the Safest to Have?

According to the most recent research findings, there are no statistically significant differences in the safety of silicone gel and saline implants.

Each form of breast implant has advantages and disadvantages.


With either type of breast implant, there is a danger of rupturing. Ruptures can be caused by a surgical mistake, a fall, or — in sporadic cases — by the pressure applied on the breast during a mammography procedure. However, the ramifications of a rupture are somewhat different for the two forms of break.

Ruptures of saline implants are relatively easy to detect. As the fluid drains out of the breast, the contour of the breast rapidly changes over days. When a saline implant ruptures, the only thing that goes out is saltwater. The seawater is taken into the body in an unharmful manner.

Ruptured silicone gel implants are more difficult to detect than other types of implants. When the implant ruptures, the silicone that leaks into the body remains in the body. It has been seen to spread outside of the breast and into distant lymph nodes in certain cases. As unsettling as it may sound, studies have shown that doing so does not result in an increased risk of disease in the long run. However, if a silicone gel implant ruptures, your doctor would almost certainly recommend that you have it removed along with any loose silicone.

In many cases, ruptures of silicone gel breast implants are “silent,” which means that patients and physicians may not be aware of the problem. They can only be spotted by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Ruptures without any overt symptoms are behind the FDA’s recommendation for annual MRI for three years after implantation and then every two years until the implants are removed.

This recommendation carries its risks.

Your insurance company may not pay the cost of an MRI. These MRIs may end up costing a woman more money throughout her life than the original implant operation.

The end effect is very pleasing. Many women and cosmetic surgeons prefer the look and feel of silicone breast implants because of their natural appearance and feel. Breast implants made of silicone are often believed to be more realistic in appearance to actual breast tissue.

Rippling skin is more likely in saline implants than other types of implants.

Platinum Risk

Breast implants made of silicone gel include platinum, whereas saline implants do not. Some individuals believe that platinum may be hazardous, which the FDA disagrees with.

Distinctions in surgical procedures. The process of filling saline implants happens after the procedure. This means that they require a smaller incision than silicone gel breast implants, filled with silicone gel before they are implanted.

In addition, many saline implants may be modified after they have been placed. A lady might opt to raise or reduce the size of her saline implants months after they were placed without having to undergo surgery. The doctor might simply use a syringe to inject additional liquid or remove it from the patient. In the case of conventional prefilled silicone gel implants, the size of the implant cannot be modified.

Women of any age can have any breast implant for reconstructive purposes.

However, saline implants are permitted for augmentation for women 18 and older, whereas silicone gel breast, whereas silicone gel implants are only authorized for women over 22, according to the FDA.

The FDA notes that the hazards associated with the two devices are distinct, particularly the difficulties associated with removing ruptured silicone gel breast implants, as an example.

Keep in mind that your doctor may strongly advocate one type of breast implant over another based on their experience. Certain factors, like your body shape or the present size of your breasts, may make one type of implant more appropriate for you.

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