There are multiple different types of implants available for use in breast enlargement. In addition multiple permutations of the various prosthesis types yield a fairly wide array of choices in terms of material, shape, coating, size. In addition, each of the two currently approved breast prosthesis manufacturers in the United States (Inamed™ and Mentor™) makes their own version of each implant with the varying characteristics.
The availabilities are as follows. Each implant is encased in a silicone elastomer shell. The shell may be smooth, or textured. The shell may be shaped like a tear-drop, also referred to as anatomical, or the shell may be perfectly round. Each configuration of the round implant may have a different degree of projection even if the amount of volume contained within is the same. As an example, one style of implant may have a volume of 500cc and a projection of 3.6cm, while another, may have a volume of 500cc but a projection of 4.7cm as a result of a narrower base. The filling material of a breast implant may be silicone, or saline, or both in the case of some implants used for breast reconstruction. The size of an implant may vary to over 1000cc, though volumes of that size are not currently approved in the U.S. and must be procured through companies in Europe or South America.
Please refer to questions related to each specific type of implant for its advantages and disadvantages. The type of implant to be used in breast augmentation revision surgery will correspond to a precise aspect of dissatisfaction with the previous operation, and may vary according to surgeon preference.