Saline vs. Silicone Breast Implants: A Review by Seattle Plastic Surgeon Dr. Shahram Salemy

One of the most common questions patients ask me is which type of breast implant should they choose: saline or silicone.  The short answer is that either can look great, but what I like to do is talk with my patients about the advantages and disadvantages of each, and then give my recommendation.  In the end, though, it’s their call as to what they want.

Saline implants are less expensive, can usually be placed through a slightly smaller incision, and look great especially in women who have a little extra breast tissue already present.  In addition, if they do rupture, your body just absorbs the saline, and it becomes obvious pretty quickly that you need it replaced.  The disadvantage, however, is that they tend to feel less natural (more like a balloon in some cases) and in very thin women you can see some rippling along the sides of the breasts.

Silicone implants cost a bit more and may need a slightly larger incision to place them, but they offer a wonderful natural shape and feel, and are much less likely to show rippling than saline implants, although very thin women may still see a little.

In the end, it’s your body and your call as to what works best for you, but in most cases we can get a fantastic result with either choice!