Breast implants have been available for many years, but researchers are constantly on a quest for better materials to make the implants safer and more comfortable. One of the newest types of implants to hit the market is the cohesive silicone gel implants, known informally as the "gummy bear" breast implant. Gummy bears are constructed of a silicone gel similar in texture to the gummi bear candies – hence, the name. Although these implants have not yet been approved by the FDA, they are all the rage in Europe and Brazil and there are a number of reasons to get excited about the possibilities they offer.
A Newer Kind of Silicone
Cohesive silicone gel implants address two of the concerns common with traditional silicone and saline implants; rupturing and rippling. If a silicone gel implant tears, the texture of the substance inside would remain cohesive and retain its shape and integrity. This alleviates the concern over silicone migrating to other parts of the body, where it could potentially result in a host of health concerns.
The cohesive silicone gel implant feels more like natural breast tissue than traditional saline implants. Gummy bear implants are currently only available in an anatomical shape, which is fuller at the bottom than the top. This structure adds to the natural look and feel of the breast implant. However, the different shape means that it is essential the implant does not move around inside the breast. The textured surface of the outer shell helps to prevent movement does from occurring.
Pros and Cons of Gummy Bear Breast Implants
There are a number of potential advantages the gummy bear breast implants offer over traditional saline and silicone-filled implants. Some of the advantages include:
Despite the many advantages gummy bear breast implants offer, there are some drawbacks to the implants as well. These include:
Despite the potential drawbacks of the gummy bear implants, patient response has thus far been overwhelmingly positive, according to a report on MSNBC about the silicone-gel implants a number of years ago. In countries like Europe and Brazil, gummy bear implants have become one of the most popular options in breast augmentation procedures today.
Waiting for the FDA
Because gummy bear breast implants are still waiting for FDA approval, clinical studies are being conducted for these devices. In order to receive gummy bear breast implants within the United States, women must get themselves enrolled in one of these studies. It is also important to find a surgeon who has performed a number of these procedures and is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, to ensure a positive outcome with your own implant surgery. To find a listing of clinical trials going on in your area, check the FDA website or ask your doctor.
Dr. Mark Schusterman and Dr. Sanaz Harirchian
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