There are a lot of all too common expressions during the initial consultation for breast augmentation. Patients may be considering the possibilities of breast implants vs. breast lift with breast implants, or simply aren’t sure what breast augmentation procedure would be right for them.
It’s commonly said that “I’m pretty sure I want to have this done but I’m extremely nervous about picking the right breast implant size”.
Patients often have thoughts about particular implant sizes or a bra cup size a friend has. They mention that they want to be just one or two cup sizes bigger. They’d like to be bigger but not too big. They want to maintain a “natural” look, but want a little more visible cleavage.
So how do we go about the process of picking the right breast implant size and what does breast implant preparation entail? The trick is finding that point where the patient’s goal intersects with their natural anatomy.
Here we will discuss some of the factors to be familiar with when preparing yourself to discuss your breast augmentation with Dr. Galanis.
BREAST AUGMENTATION – IMPLANT SIZES AND CUP SIZES
Cup sizes are not standardized between manufacturers. Furthermore, it’s a crapshoot to match an implant size with a cup size. A 250cc implant on one frame might increase a patient by one cup size while the same implant might increase another patient by two cup sizes.
By the same logic, just because a friend of yours had a 300cc implant and had a particular result does not mean you would have the same result with the same breast implants. Don’t think about cup sizes or cc’s but rather focus on the look you want.
Breast cup size and breast implant size are two seperate things in the world of breast augmentation. As an example, silicone breast implants are determined and measured in cubic centimeters(cc), whereas the final breast size is measured in cup size for a bra.
We ask patients to show us photos of an ideal result. They can pick from our gallery of patients or they can do their own web searches. These goal photos are a crucial first step in communicating goals with your board certified plastic surgeon. A picture indeed says a thousand words.
BREAST IMPLANT SIZE CHART
Prior to breast augmentation, plastic surgeons utilize implant size charts to estimate the approximate final cup size corresponding to each implant volume. However, other factors such as implant profile, shape, and your natural anatomy can also influence the ultimate size of your breasts following breast augmentation surgery.
DOES IMPLANT PROFILE CHANGE BREAST IMPLANT SIZE?
Breast implant profiles pertain to the extent the breast implants project forward from the chest wall when standing. Breast implants with the same size (cc volume) but different implant shape like varying widths or implant diameter will result in different levels of projection.
Breast implants with a lower profile typically yield a softer, flatter appearance. Many average-sized patients find that the projection of moderate profile implants suits them best, offering a more natural look.
Given the diversities in body shape and body size, determining the ideal projection for your specific figure can be a complex task in determining breast size and implant profile.
In cases where there is minimal natural breast tissue, a high profile implant might be suggested to achieve the desired fullness. On the contrary, if there is more natural breast tissue, opting for a low profile implant could be more suitable to preserve a natural appearance.
High-profile implants offer greater fullness in the upper region of the breasts compared to flatter implants with the same base width. This leads to a more rounded and noticeable appearance, making it a preferred choice for individuals seeking a substantial boost in breast volume and improved cleavage.
THE DIFFERENT SIZES OF BREAST IMPLANTS
The majority of breast augmentation patients in the United States opt for breast implant sizes ranging from 300 to 500cc. However, it’s worth noting that an implant size as small as 100cc and as large as 800cc are available in the US market.
When you get into the larger breast implant sizes you probably would ask yourself how durable are breast implants.
It’s important to be mindful that when planning for breast implant surgery selecting a size that significantly exceeds your body’s proportions can elevate the risk of complications.
For instance, opting for implants that are too large for your body frame may lead to potential back problems in the future due to the additional weight they impose.
Here are some general guidelines to put some perspective on breast implant sizes:
Breast Implants in the 300cc range
For women in the US, the 350-400cc range stands out as the most popular size for breast implants. This range provides a noticeable enhancement while maintaining a natural and proportionate appearance.
For women of average size and measurements, implant volumes between 300 and 400cc are often equivalent to a size C cup bra. If the goal is to fit into a smaller C cup and you have an average build, an implant size in the range of 300-325cc may be suitable.
On the other hand, if you aim for the larger, fuller end of the C cup spectrum, considering implants in the range of 375-400cc might be appropriate.
Breast Implants in the 400cc range
Opting for 400cc breast implants places you at the larger end of C cups, and for some women, it may even reach the size of small D cups. There is a notable visual distinction between 300cc implants and 400cc implants.
Breast Implants in the 500cc range
Patients searching for larger breast implants typically prefer a maximum implant size of 500cc. Beyond this point, implants can pose increased risks.
If you’re contemplating a larger breast implant size exceeding 500cc, Dr. Galanis will provide full transparency about potential risks of an overly large implant, including potential discomfort in the future and the potential necessity for a revision breast augmentation or breast reduction.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF BREAST IMPLANT?
When considering breast augmentation, there are four main options for breast implants: saline implants, silicone implants, gummy bear implants, and fat grafting.
Although these choices might initially seem overwhelming when added to all the factors mentioned above, each option comes with its unique advantages and disadvantages.
By having a clear understanding of your breast augmentation goals, you’re more likely to discover an implant type that perfectly aligns with your preferences.
In addition to these options, you will also need to choose between round implants and teardrop implants. Round implants tend to be a little more popular because they add fullness to both the lower and upper part of your breast. These round implants also provides more lift and cleavage to the breast.
Teardrop anatomical implants have an oval shape to them and give a more natural sloping appearance. These contain a highly cohesive silicone gel that are firmer than traditional silicone implants providing a more stable shape to your breast.
We take a series of measurements to understand each patient’s anatomy prior to any breast augmentation surgery. Evaluation includes breast width, distance between the nipple and the fold, areolar width, skin elasticity, skin thickness, and shoulder width among others.
A detail-oriented understanding of each patient’s anatomy is a critical part of the process for determining the breast implant profile and confirming the desired size.
By accurately defining the footprint, we can personalize the implant selection and ensure we are not violating the patient’s specific anatomic boundaries and that the goal size is accomplishable.
BRA SIZERS AND 3D IMAGING
This is the part of consultation where patients really start to enjoy putting all the pieces of their breast augmentation process together.
Specially-made bra sizers are designed to give a patient a reasonable estimate of what specific implant sizes will look like helping to determine your ideal breast implant size.
Knowing the patient’s general goal from our discussion and goal photos, we will have a good idea of a volume where we can start.
The sizers are placed underneath a special pad-less bra and patients are given time to look in the mirror with or without a shirt on over the bra. They can try bigger or smaller size of breast depending on their preference.
Once we narrow down a volume, we can use 3D imaging technology to produce a postoperative rendering of what an implant would like on the patient’s body.
At this point in the consultation, between the goal photos, bra sizers, and 3D imaging, we have effectively narrowed down the volume to a narrow range.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
What is the most common breast implant size?
The implant size range of 350-400cc stands out as the most popular choice among women in the US. This range provides a noticeable enhancement while maintaining a natural and proportionate appearance.
For women of average size with standard measurements, volumes ranging from 300-400cc are often associated with the size of a C cup bra.
What is the smallest breast implant size?
The smallest breast implant size that is normally requested is around 250cc. These smaller breast implants are available in sizes down to 145cc, which is an estimated half a cup size. It is possible though to receive even smaller with special requests.
Will my plastic surgeon recommend a breast implant size?
Yes, your cosmetic surgeon, after considering many factors, reviewing your body shape and body measurements, and considering your personal goals will make a breast implant size recommendation. You will be able to try on sizers to get a general idea of your new look and discuss with your plastic surgeon.
What does high profile mean when discussing high profile breast implant?
High-profile type of breast implants offer heightened forward projection. Characterized by narrow base diameters, they contribute to increased fullness in the upper poles, resulting in the creation of additional cleavage.
High-profile style implants take on a rounder and fuller appearance, making them particularly well-suited for women with narrow chest walls.
BOOK YOUR CONSULTATION SOON
It is something of a journey moving from an idea of a look to a specific plan for the operating room. However, the techniques that we use not only help a patient define the look they want but also empower them to be an active member in the decision-making process.
In this way, on the day of breast surgery, much of the anxiety patients might have felt in the beginning is replaced with peace of mind, confidence, and excitement.
If you would like to learn more about breast augmentation, call the office today to schedule a breast implant consultation at Galanis Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills with board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Charles J. Galanis.