The Jacobs Center for Cosmetic Surgery

The Shape of It: Implant Options for Breast Augmentation

There is no “one way” to perform breast augmentation surgery. San Francisco Bay Area plastic surgeon Dr. Eric Culbertson emphasizes to women looking to add volume to their breasts that each procedure is as unique as the patient. Variables to consider range from size of the implants to their filling (saline or silicone) to their shape.

In general, there are two primary shapes for women to choose from when it comes to breast implants.

Round implants are circular (as the name implies). For many years, this shape was the only option—and an ideal choice for women looking to give the upper half, or “pole,” of the breast a particularly full look. By rounding out this upper portion, the entire breast can appear more voluminous.

Some women, however, preferred a more anatomically natural shape. The eventual development of “teardrop” shaped implants can accommodate these patients, as the devices are thicker at the bottom, then taper to a narrower top. Added volume appears primarily in the lower pole of the breast, with the surgical result mimicking the curve and slope of a pre-augmented breast. The final look is still noticeable, but is more subtle.

There is no “right” way to choose which implant shape is best. Patient preference is obviously incredibly important, so Dr. Culbertson works collaboratively to discover the sort of fullness and ultimate shape each woman desires from her augmentation surgery.

Note, however, that there are some other considerations to take into account. A round implant is more likely to rotate within its pocket. Because the device is a circle, there should be no visual difference if the bottom part of the implant ends up at the top. While an anatomical implant is less likely to rotate, it is more noticeable if it does.

In cases of breast reconstruction, an anatomical shape may be the best choice depending on how much skin and tissue are available to cover the implant.

As a board-certified plastic surgeon devoted to breast and body surgery, Dr. Culbertson is experienced in guiding women to the augmentation solution that will deliver beautiful results. For more information, call The Jacobs Center for Cosmetic Surgery in Healdsburg at (707) 473-0220 or send a message via the practice’s Contact Us page.