Are Round Breast Implants the best for a petite woman?

Are round breast implants the best option for petite woman? How do they differ from teardrop options? I am concerned because of how small my frame is. All of my friends say that I will tip over if I decide to get larger breasts. What is the breast size to frame ratio that doctors typically recommend?

LeUrsa26

F, 29, New Jersey

Hi.  There are so many sizes and shapes and profiles to choose from.  Your plastic surgeon can help you pick one that works for your body and for making sure you accomplish your goals.  The aesthetic outcome of breast augmentation depends on so many factors, that I think it is easiest for you to decide the answers to all your questions if you go for a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon.  Best of luck!

Dr. Jonathan Heistein has 17 Breast Augmentation before & afters:

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The decision of which size and shape of breast implant represents the ideal choice is a matter of personal aesthetic preference. Surveys have shown that shaped implants result in a higher level of patient satisfaction and more natural-looking results than round, basic breast implants. Round breast implants are the more popular choice, however, and are easier to work with for many plastic surgeons.

Some patients are concerned about potential issues resulting from shaped implants. In my experience, issues like implant rotation are extraordinarily rare and are typically the result of an inexperienced surgeon. If the implant pocket is correctly shaped, the implant will remain in the correct position with no rotation at all. Other situations like rippling can be successfully avoided by applying a special cohesive gel during the procedure.

Shaped breast implants are a better choice for many patients and can produce excellent, natural-looking results. But they may not be the best choice for you. For a specific recommendation and to review a full range of options, I encourage you to come in for a personal consultation.

When considering plastic surgery, always consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon. Be sure to review their work by looking at previous patients’ before and after photographs.

Robert Brueck has 1 Breast augmentation before & after:

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Great questions. Once you've decided to have breast augmentation surgery you'll need to make some important decisions about breast implant shape and size. Which options represent the best choice for you are largely an aesthetic decision, and depend on your personal goals and body type.

Round breast implants are by far the most popular choice in the United States. Round implants are easy to insert and may have fewer associated issues post-operatively. They have a smooth surface, which makes it unlikely that you will ‘feel’ the implants in the future.

Round breast implants also change their shape more fluidly -- allowing them to assume different shapes depending on your posture. They will hang naturally when standing and lie somewhat flatter on the chest when you are lying on your back -- providing an overall natural appearance.

Teardrop breast implants or "shaped implants" are preferred by many women because they can result in a more natural breast shape. In some cases, a round breast implant will often have greater projection, which can appear more artificial or unnatural. This is particularly true if you have thin skin tissue in your breast area, which sometimes increases the visibility of a round implant within the breast, creating an unnatural look.

Inserting shaped or teardrop implants requires additional training, so some plastic surgeons may not feel 100% comfortable with them. For best results be sure to visit a board-certified plastic surgeon who has experience with teardrop-shaped implants.

Robert N. Young has 1 Breast augmentation before & after:

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Selecting the "right size" breast implant is a very personal decision when considering breast augmentation, and is one that many women agonize over. No one wants to feel that they've chosen a size that is too small or too big. So what is the best way to decide? At DrYoungForever (Dr. Robert N. Young) we believe that it is best to involve our patients in the process right from the start.


One thing we hear a lot is, "My friend looks great and she got 425cc implants. That's the size I want." Others, after reading materials on-line are influenced by what is perceived as the right size by others. Some have no idea where to start. It's made even more difficult when you try to select by bra sizes as every manufacturer uses different standards. A 34C at Victoria's Secret will be much different than another brand. We believe the personal approach is best.

We find it helpful to let our patients explore a range of sizes by trying on "sizers", which are breast shaped firm silicone. Wearing an elastic bra that keeps the sizers in place, you are able to get a good idea of what different size implants would look like on your own body. You're free to view yourself from the front, as well as the side, and even put on a shirt to see if it creates the look you desire.

It takes approximately 350cc in order to increase your cup size two sizes. But, to keep things in perspective, remember that 50 cc is the equivalent of only 3.38 tablespoons, so agonizing whether to get 350cc vs. 370cc or 425cc vs. 450cc implants is a very small difference.

Robert N. Young has 1 Breast augmentation before & after:

Breast augmentation before image performed by Dr. Robert N. YoungBreast augmentation after image performed by Dr. Robert N. Young

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Your questions are excellent and, ultimately, unanswerable. Why? For one thing, there is no standard for bra cup size; all manufacturers make bras to their own, in-house standards. Victoria's Secret, for example, always size patients to a large cup size because they make their bras small. This makes it impossible to have a precise conversation regarding breast size in relation to implant size and cup size. I have always sized my patients in the operating room using breast implant sizers for this reason and I tell all patient that, although I will do my best to make them the size they desire, neither I, nor any surgeon, can guarantee success in this. Studies have shown that both round and tear drop implants assume a tear drop shape in the breast and even plastic surgeons often can't tell which is which. In one study, patients had a round implant put in one breast and a tear drop in the other at surgery. Photographs were taken and when these were reviewed by surgeons who didn't know what was in each side, over half of them guessed wrong when asked which was the breast with the tear drop implant. On concern with tear drop shaped implants, especially in young women, who will have these for many years, is that all of them are textured, i.e. the implant surface is "fuzzy". This is to minimize the chance of the implant flipping or spinning in the pocket, which could lead to an odd appearance to the breasts. Textured implants have been linked to a rare cancer, anaplastic large cell lymphoma of the breast. None has been reported in women who have only had smooth implants. This cancer typically arises 8 or more years after the surgery. The incidence of this cancer is not well established. Some studies indicate an incidence of one in a thousand patients, whereas in others it is much less frequent than this. This needs to be taken into account in all young women seeking breast augmentation. If you have a small frame, it is important to be sized carefully so that you do not look out of proportion. Any good plastic surgeon can do this for you and you should be able to get a nice result.