When it comes to choosing a breast implant, most women have an opinion as to what they think is best for them based on what they have heard from friends, or what they have read on the Internet. Unfortunately, much of what they have learned in their research may be completely false and, as a result, have selected an implant size or shape for themselves that completely inappropriate and will not achieve what they are hoping for.
No Universal Ideal Implant
There is no one-breast implant that is the best for every patient. There are advantages and disadvantages to all types of breast implants and each patient needs to be thoroughly evaluated to determine what type and size of implant would be the best for her depending on her size, shape, measurements, tissue characteristics, and aesthetic goals.
Some surgeons will not allow the patient to be involved in the decision as to what type, size, shape, or style of implant to use. When faced with these circumstances, I strongly suggest finding another surgeon to perform your surgery. Do not confuse this situation, however, with one where a surgeon is trying to steer you away from a bad decision such as selecting extremely large implants or, in my opinion, choosing to put implants on top of the muscle.
Of the most common breast implants that are used in the United States, there are about 14 to 16 different size options, of which 3 or 4 could be appropriate for each patient depending on their build, starting breast size, tissue characteristics, and desires. To help patients select the most appropriate size, most surgeons will have them put implants into their bra to see what kind of change each size will make. It can be helpful at this time to have the input of a husband or boyfriend to help make the decision as long as they are not the driving force behind the procedure and are no pushing to go too big.
One source of confusion can be the actual name of the implant. High profile implants are a perfect example. Some patients confuse the term ‘high profile’ with for fullness on the upper pole of the breasts; when, in fact, high profile implants are smaller in diameter and give less fullness to the breast upper pole but provide more projection to the center of the breast.
Openly Express Your Goals
Some patients are afraid to tell their surgeon of their true desires, being embarrassed to say that they actually want bigger than what would normally be recommended for their size and ‘natural’ is not a big concern; they actually want to look somewhat fake in appearance. If you are not explicit with your surgeon as to your true aesthetic goal, you will likely come out of surgery disappointed. It is very important that your surgeon knows exactly what you are trying to accomplish before surgery when you are selecting which implant to get. It often helps to bring in photographs of what you are trying to achieve. Be sure to select pictures of women who are close to your size and build.
It is in the best interest of the patient to do their research, ask the doctor questions, and have realistic goals.