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Smaller, Softer and Natural Appearing Breast Implants

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Smaller, Softer and Natural Appearing Breast Implants
June 23
17:07 2017

For the past few years, an increased exposure of images of unrealistic body proportions has surfaced and advertised by pharmaceutical companies, product manufacturers and clinics targeting individuals to accept an unrealistic sense of beauty. The popularity of some aesthetic surgical procedures has resulted in increased rates of disproportioned or aesthetically unbalanced bodies, in some cases carrying health risks and safety concerns.

How far is too far?

This year, a new trend is starting to submerge, and the popularity of increasing demand for smaller, softer and natural appearing breast implants a supposed to the overly large breasts.

The study published in the Annals of Plastic Surgery, the ‘Aesthetic Breast Shape Preferences Among Plastic Surgeons’. Points out a variety of patient demographics that included different countries, doctors, and preferences of implant sizes. As a result, the natural and small implant sizes have been a common selection for women, particularly more in some parts of Europe.

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The increasing request for breast augmentation described as less upper breast fullness, and that is of a natural teardrop shape. Whereas, in the USA, the population prefers a fuller upper breast volume and overall shape.

Plastic surgeons traditionally will follow and use a standardised measurement guide of the patient’s anatomy and measurements to decide on the implant size and shape. A measurement system that is used and known as the ‘TEPID system’; (T) tissue characteristics of the (E) envelope, (P) parenchyma, (I) implant, (D) fill volume and dynamics.

Overall, the TEPID system includes the amount and depth of the different layers of the individual’s skin, the width and base of the breast tissue that the patient presents. Also, the natural stretch of the skin will give the surgeon an indication of how much of the envelope of the breast tissue may potentially allow for the amount of fill volume. The fill volume can be a critical choice as this could potentially lead to a higher risk of healing complications depending on the individual’s tissue characteristics.

When choosing the implant size, an individual will want to consider these following risks:

  • The breast tissue thinning/stretching of the skin
  • Implant bottoming out
  • Visible veins, rippling, and visibility of the implant
  • Capsular contraction
  • Breast ptosis (drooping) or higher risk of long-term ptosis
  • Double bubble formation

Recent studies released by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons has shown that the size choice of breast implants has significantly changed as more patients are requesting an implant size that is smaller or more realistic to their body proportion. A comparison of these study’s results to the years between 1990 to mid-2000 where there was a steady, and dramatic increase of implant sized surgeries. Patient’s who underwent breast augmentation in those years by now would be or would have already had a revision surgery due to the typical life frame of breast implants.

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There can be many advantages to choosing a smaller implant size which can include the possibility of the following healing aspects:

  • Fewer stretch marks of the breast tissue area
  • A natural shape or less visibility of the implant shape
  • Reduced recovery time or less discomfort when healing
  • Decreased risk of back/shoulder related pain

Along with the healing risks associated with larger breast implants, plastic surgeons are reporting that the demand for smaller implants is now increasing consistently, and the size selection is starting to change aesthetically towards smaller proportions to compliment the woman’s body better.

By carefully selecting an implant that is more proportionate to your body could avoid having a second surgery and healing risks associated with a second operation. Other benefits may include the financial accountability of going back into the operating room for a revision surgery sooner than expected.

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