When considering breast implants, a common question our physicians get is “what is the difference between teardrop (also called shaped) and round implants?” There are some pretty big differences, but not the ones you would expect! Breast augmentation today is all about customizing the procedure to your desired look and body type, teardrop, and round implants allow us to customize this procedure even further.
Shape Of a Breast Implant
There are two general implant shapes: teardrop and round. Teardrop implants have more of a slope and less fullness in the upper part of the implant, to mimic the natural contours of the breast and produce a natural result. All teardrop implants have a textured surface. Round implants provide the upper breast with the most volume and can still yield natural results when paired with the correct implant placement and volume. Smooth, round implants are our most popular implant recommendation due to consistency of results, natural appearance, and low rate of complication.
Teardrop and round implants vary beyond just their shape alone. Here are some other areas in which the two kinds of implants differ:
A common reason patients are interested in teardrop implants is the idea that they will look more natural since they are “pre-shaped” to mimic the natural contour of a breast. While this is true, round implants also look natural due to the cohesive gel settling at the bottom of the implant while in an upright position. Round implants, in fact, tend to look more natural when the patient is lying down as the silicone becomes evenly distributed, whereas teardrop implants remain in their original shape.
Since teardrop implants are asymmetrically shaped, they carry a risk of rotating within the breast pocket. This implant rotation, also known as implant “malposition”, can compromise the shape and symmetry of the breasts and require additional, corrective surgery to address. Round implants are perfectly symmetrical and thus carry no risk of rotating.
Due to their tendency to rotate in the breast pocket, teardrop implants are only available with a textured surface. This textured outer shell can make teardrop implants more prone to wrinkling, which can potentially lead to the visible rippling of the implant. In addition, textured implants are associated with an increased risk of capsular contracture, the development of internal scar tissue that forms a tight, constricting capsule around the implant and causes the breast to feel hard.
Can you feel the difference?
When smooth or textured breast implants are placed beneath the chest muscle it can be impossible to feel the difference between the two. However, textured breast implants have a thicker wall than smooth implants and thus can feel firmer. In addition, textured implants are more likely to have palpable folds and ripples. This means that in people with little breast tissue, if the textured implant is placed on top of the muscle, it is more likely to be felt than a smooth implant.
Gummy Bear Implants
“The Gummy Bear Implant” is the affectionate nickname given to the newest type of silicone breast implant on the market, one that has quickly become the gold standard for surgeons and patients alike. Approved by the FDA in 2013, this superior fifth generation gel implant is remarkable for its tapered shape and supple, cohesive nature, both of which perfectly mimic the natural contour and feel of the female breast. In fact, some women report that even their significant others cannot tell they’ve had breast augmentation surgery. Today, the gummy bear implants come in shaped, round, textured, smooth, and low, moderate, or high profiles.
When compared to other silicone and saline implants, the Gummy Bear maintains its shape more faithfully over time, resisting gravity, aging, and anatomical flaws through its distinctive, “form-stable” engineering. This not only offers women a more natural-looking outcome, they are also safer, as the implant is far less likely to rupture. Folds, ripples and creases are rare within the Gummy Bear, making tears and leakage extremely unlikely.
When choosing your implants, there are so many options available to you. Your best resource when making these choices is going to be an expert plastic surgeon that listens to your considerations and ideal goals before recommending a good option for you, whether it be smooth, round implants or textured, teardrop (shaped) implants. We offer breast augmentation consultations so that you may discuss your long-term goals with your surgeon and receive personalized recommendations. At Capizzi MD Cosmetic Surgery, we want you to reach your aesthetic goals with the support of the best team in North Carolina.