Round or Tear Drop Breast Implants?

Breast Augmentation can be performed with either Round or Teardrop ( anatomic ) implants. The shape is an important factor in the outcome of Breast Augmentation.

Both shapes have their pros and cons. Round implants are cheaper and don’t have problems with rotation. Tear drop implants are more expensive and can be subject to shape change if rotating. There is also surgeon bias with some surgeons preferring one over the other.

I use both types of implant and try to tailor it to the patient. Small breasted women who are slim are likely to have a better aesthetic outcome with Tear Drop implants. By the same token, larger breasted women with adequate body fat do well with Rounds.

It is not always possible to guess whether patients have had Round or Tear Drop implants but sometimes the outline of the implant is visible in the upper pole, even if placed under the muscle. Looking at web sites with pre and post photos such as Plastic Surgery Forum may help.

Many of my patients start by explaining that they are looking for a natural shape that is not noticeable. I’m inclined to recommend Tear Drop in many of these cases. Ultimately I leave it up to the patient as to the final decision.

What Size do I go?

Breast Augmentation patients angst most about what size implant to choose. Surgeons use different methods of helping patients select a size of implant. I personally use an implant sizer set that the patients place in a crop top in front of the mirror. Other surgeons use computer imaging with 3 D camera setup but I think this is more of a marketing issue. Some even wait until the surgery and use sizers to determine the ultimate size. I prefer to have the patient make the size decision well prior to the surgery.

If the breasts are uneven in size and the discrepancy is small I recommend using the same size implant. If however the size discrepancy is greater than 40-50 ml I will recommend different size implants.

Most of my patients fall in the range of 200-400 ml with the mean size being around 320 ml. It’s rarely worth using implants less than 200 ml and I am reluctant to use implants greater than 400 mls as bigger implants are more likely to cause problems and women end up looking top heavy. Using a 300 ml implant is likely to increase the cup size from say A to C or D cup. Bear in mind when making the decision on size that the commonest cause of complaint post Breast Augmentation is that they wish they had gone bigger.

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