Understanding the Differences in Breast Implant Shapes


A teardrop-shaped breast implant mimics the natural contour of the breast.

Women who are considering breast augmentation should take time to consider which shape of implants they prefer. Available in either round or teardrop-shaped forms, the optimal implant can be determined by the patient’s body type, amount of pre-existing breast tissue, and placement of the implant. At our Pittsburgh, PA, practice, Dr. Julio Clavijo-Alvarez takes a highly personalized approach to all of his breast surgery procedures and will take the time to determine which breast implant shape is right for you.

Pros and Cons of Round Breast Implants

Round implants are spherical, with no discernable sides, front, or back. Because of their shape, round implants can shift around without changing the shape of the breast. This preserves the original look and feel that was achieved through breast augmentation. Generally, round implants are less expensive than teardrop-shaped implants.

Some patients prefer other options, because they believe round implants do not look as natural as other implants. However, there are plenty of women who are completely satisfied with the results of their breast augmentation using round implants.

Pros and Cons of Teardrop-Shaped Breast Implants

Due to gravity, natural breast tissue is pulled downward, creating a more sloped appearance toward the collar bone. Teardrop-shaped implants mimic this natural contour while still offering the desired enlargement that many women seek.

Due to their shape, it is possible for teardrop-shaped implants to shift out of place. Unlike round implants, this will affect the aesthetic appearance of the breast. To reduce this possibility, teardrop-shaped implants are textured on the outside in an effort to prevent movement.

Available in either round or teardrop-shaped forms, the optimal implant can be determined by the patient’s body type, amount of pre-existing breast tissue, and placement of the implant.

Smooth vs. Textured Breast Implants

Breast implants are available in two textures: smooth and textured. The smooth surface is sleek, and has an even surface all the way around. Textured implants have an irregular surface that resembles fine sandpaper. Both of these options offer specific benefits.

Smooth implants typically have a thinner shell than their textured counterparts. Because of this, they are usually softer to the touch than the textured implants. Overall, smooth implants last longer and cost less than the textured variety. They also reduce the likelihood of visible rippling once the implants are placed. Smooth implants are quite popular among women who undergo breast augmentation. In fact, the majority of these surgeries are performed using smooth breast implants.

Textured implants were designed specifically to prevent shifting after surgery. The roughened surface of the implant tends to reduce movement and keep the implant in its original position. This feature is especially important when placing teardrop-shaped implants, so that the breasts do not become distorted or altered. Textured implants rarely become displaced. However, they are more prone to leaks and visible rippling than their smooth counterparts.

At one point, it was thought that textured implants helped to reduce the risk of capsular contracture. This occurs when scar tissue developing around the implant results in tightness, hardness, and discomfort in the breast. However, to date, no clear evidence has shown that textured implants lower the chances of this condition.

Contact ReNova for More Information

If you are considering breast augmentation and would like to explore your options for breast implant shapes, schedule a consultation with Dr. Clavijo-Alvarez. He can help you design a personalized treatment plan to achieve your specific aesthetic goals. Call our office at (412) 638-2391 or contact us online anytime to schedule your appointment. 

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