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Women Overwhelmingly Choose Silicone for Breast Augmentation

As noted in a recent blog post, the most recent figures from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons show that the top cosmetic surgical procedure performed in the United States each year is breast augmentation surgery. St. Louis’ West County Plastic Surgeons of Washington University is certainly aware of the continuous upward trend in this procedure, which has remained the country’s most commonly chosen cosmetic surgery since 2006 and which enjoyed a four percent jump between 2015 and 2016.

But breast augmentation is not a single, never-varying procedure, as there are numerous variables involving implant size and type. In the recent decade of the surgery’s rise, plastic surgeons have seen favor increasingly turn toward silicone over saline implants. Silicone became widely available in 2006 after a moratorium ended with the FDA’s approval for its use in cosmetic augmentation.

Ten years later, data shows that saline implants made up just 16 percent of all breast augmentations in 2016. Silicone was the material of choice in 84 percent of the 290,467 total augmentation surgeries performed in the same year.

Why the obvious preference for silicone? Many women state that silicone feels more natural than saline, preferring the thicker gel to salt water. Another benefit comes in the event an implant ruptures. Liquid saline can easily leak and, though sterile, lead to a deflated look. Silicone does not flow as readily—especially form-stable silicone, which is frequently likened to a gummy bear candy in terms of consistency.

Numbers don’t lie, but they also don’t tell the whole story. Despite more than three quarters of breast augmentation patients opting for silicone, that type of implant is not ideal for every woman. West County Plastic Surgeons of Washington County works with each patient to help her determine the best option for meeting her needs and wants when it comes to breast augmentation in St. Louis. To learn more, call (314) 996-8800 or visit the Contact Us page.