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Breast Augmentation in the Modern Era: Top Three Advancements

Breast Augmentation in the Modern Era: Top Three Advancements

A growing number of Arizona plastic surgery patients have been on the pursuit of happiness in matters concerning the breasts. A bigger chest has been an infatuation of women for almost half a century, and people interested in breast augmentations are increasing year after year. When ranking all cosmetic surgical procedures in 2018; breast augmentation tops the list, which has been the case since 2006 in the United States.

It has been a rebuking and turbulent journey for breast augmentation in the world of plastic surgery procedures. Fortunately, advancements in materials and techniques implemented throughout the decades have made present-day breast enhancement safer and faster. Modern breast implants provide a more natural shape, feel, and look than ever before.

A Glimpse of the Past

To appreciate how far breast augmentation has come, let us discuss its early beginnings.

During the 50s and 60s, breast augmentation utilized different implant materials to produce larger-looking breasts. The most notable — believe it or not — were cloth tapes and sponges wound into a ball. While at the time, these materials provided "great" outcomes, the breasts would harden and lose over 25 percent of their volume within a year after augmentation. The unfavorable long-term results were due to the capsular nature of the implant, which at the time, had an inclination to contract or reduce in size and shape.

Early Introduction of Saline & Silicone Gel Breast Implants

Silicone gel breast implants were first sold in the U.S. in 1963, but sales were relatively slow until the 1980s. Silicone gel transformed the breast augmentation industry by introducing a more natural-feeling implant to the market. Over the next ten years, silicone breast implants proceeded to improve. Manufacturers made several generational changes to its gel viscidity and structure, providing the implants a softer feel and allowing them to remain intact longer.

However, during the 1970s, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) removed silicone implants from the market due to safety concerns. It took several years of clinical research to verify or dismiss all concerns. As of November 2006, FDA-approved silicone breast implants are officially cleared of causing any harm to its recipients. Since receiving the FDA's approval, silicone implants have continued to improve with various external shells and formulations to prevent the chances of rupturing.

Manufacturers, likewise, introduced saline implants in the 1960s, but have been less sought-after than the silicone gel variants due to their perceived "less-than-natural" feel and appearance. Unlike silicone gel implants, a plastic surgeon can insert saline implants while empty, and then fill them once in place under the breast tissue. Scientists consider saline (a mixture of salt and water) as a harmless substance, which the body safely absorbs in the unlikely event that an implant breaks.

Latest Breast Augmentation Advancements

In the 21st Century, a multitude of innovations and progressions in the science of breast augmentation has made the modern era an ideal time to undergo the procedure. The latest implants for breast augmentation mimic the feel and appearance of natural breasts, all while minimizing the occurrence of pain-related symptoms associated with the past.

Below are three of the latest improvements in breast augmentation.

1. Gummy Bear Implants

"Gummy Bear" or Cohesive Gel Implants, as the name implies, have more in common with the attributes of a gummy bear than having gel-like fluid inside an implant. Although this technology has been present since the mid-2000s, the FDA approved gummy implants for use in the United States in 2013.

According to Healthline — the fastest growing site for information about health and wellness — "Gummy bear breast implants have both a silicone shell and a silicone gel filling. Their advantage, compared with other silicone implants, is that gummy bear implants retain their shape, but also leave breasts naturally soft to the touch."

Furthermore, unlike a traditional silicone-based breast implant, a gummy bear implant holds its shape even if the external shell breaks, all because the gel is thicker. This is in stark contrast to more liquid forms of silicone implants, which could leak outside of their capsule if ruptured. In hindsight, cohesive gel implants are well-known for having a low rupture rate over a ten-year period.

2. Techniques for Faster Recovery

Much has changed since sponges and cloth tapes were the materials of choice for breast implants. Not only have medical devices improved, but so did surgical techniques. Breast augmentation in the modernist era is less invasive to a degree, and recovery periods are becoming shorter.

To achieve rapid recovery following breast augmentation, a skilled plastic surgeon places the implant under the muscle. It causes less bleeding or bruising, and with inflammation or swelling in the body being practically non-existent. These advanced cosmetic surgery procedures can be completed much faster, compared to the average of two hours for more traditional forms of breast enhancement surgery.

3. Reduced Post-Operative Pain

One of the few shortcomings associated with breast augmentation is the occurrence of pain after the procedure. Most patients often rely on prescription painkillers to cope with any discomfort during the recovery period. And, though quick recovery techniques for breast augmentation exist to manage pain, there is still room for improvement.

In response, scientists have developed non-narcotic numbing agents. Plastic surgeons can inject these into the surgical site to decrease pain and reduce the need for strong painkillers during the healing process. These new medications have a honeycomb structure, allowing them to dissolve over several days.

Find an Expert in Advanced Plastic Surgery Techniques

Whether you are looking to enlarge and beautify your breasts or seeking more information about plastic surgery, Dr. Aldo Guerra is the board-certified plastic surgeon for you. His experience of over 15 years and knowledge of the ever-advancing industry of cosmetic medicine can help you achieve the breast augmentation results of your dreams. Dr. Guerra's compassionate nature and excellent bedside manner can help you feel comfortable in his care, as he is dedicated to delivering the best outcome possible.

To schedule your personalized consultation today in Phoenix and Scottsdale, AZ — call us at 480-970-2580 or complete our online form.


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