Round and Shaped Breast Implants Produce Similar Results

According to a recent study published in the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, plastic surgeons and nurses can't tell whether breast augmentation surgery was done using conventional round implants or newer anatomically shaped implants. In the study, 30 plastic surgeons and plastic surgery nurses reviewed preoperative and postoperative photos of 30 women who had undergone breast augmentation with round or anatomically shaped implants—15 patients in each group. The two groups were otherwise similar: all procedures were done using silicone implants, placed under the muscle (subpectoral), with an average implant size of about 300 cc. For each set of photos, the surgeons and nurses judged whether the procedure was done using round or shaped implants. The goal was to determine if they could distinguish the aesthetic results of round versus shaped implants. The results suggest that routine use of increasingly popular teardrop-shaped implants is not justified. Since the study produced no significant difference in recognizing implant types for breast augmentation, it questions the industry trend of using shaped implants—especially since they cost more and carry a risk of complications related to implant rotation, compared to round implants. "The systematic use of anatomically shaped implants is not justified," says Carlos Rubi, M.D., plastic surgeon at The IMED Hospital Department of Plastic Surgery (Valencia, Spain). "Natural results are achieved with both types of implants."