Deciding to have breast augmentation with the team at Austin Cosmetic Surgery is a big decision in itself, and not one to make on a whim. You’ve probably been doing some research. If so, you know that, beyond the overall decision to move forward with the procedure, you’ll have many additional choices/decisions to make.
One of those, obviously, will be the type of implant. In the past you’ve had two choices, saline or silicone. But in 2012 a new type of implant entered your realm of options — the gummy bear implant. While technically a silicone implant, gummy bear implants are so different we think they merit their own category of sorts. We like our patients to have as much information as possible about all of our procedures at Austin Cosmetic Surgery, so here’s some information on these newer breast implant options.
What is a gummy bear implant?
If you’ve been researching breast augmentation, you’ve no doubt heard of this relatively new implant type. These implants retain their shape, unlike other implant choices, because the gel is thicker than traditional silicone implants. In addition to “gummy bear implants” they are also known as cohesive, form-stable, or highly cohesive. The term “gummy bear” was coined by a surgeon in early testing of these implants, and it stuck. These implants are made by three companies: Sientra, Allergan, and Mentor.
Cohesive silicone gel
There is some misunderstanding about what “cohesive gel” breast implants really are. In reality, all silicone implants sold today use a much more “cohesive” silicone gel than implants from the 80s and early 90s. Only the most cohesive, i.e. thicker, are deemed to be “gummy bear implants.” To get an idea of the density, if a cohesive implant is cut in half, there is no gross movement of gel, and the implant maintains its shape.
Cohesive breast implants are anatomically shaped to match the natural breast, which projects more at the bottom than at the top. The teardrop shape is thinner at the top, filling out more at the bottom. This shape maintains itself due to the thicker nature of the cohesive gel.
All gummy bear implants are textured. This texturing increases friction and helps keep the implants from rotating.
Although there aren’t any long-term studies on these implants, Sientra has released these statistics from five years of usage:
- Low rate (3.9%) of capsular contracture
- Over 98% rupture-free through five years
- Zero reported incidences of implant rotation
Like traditional implants, gummy bear implants can rupture, although the gel will stay close to the implant. Rippling is far less prevalent with cohesive implants than with traditional silicone or saline implants.
While doing your research about augmentation, be sure to include cohesive gel/gummy bear implants. If you have questions or would like to book a consultation with either Dr. Carlotti, please call us in Austin at (512) 688-8000, or in Scottsdale at (480) 947-7700(480) 947-7700.