What Are Cohesive Gel Breast Implants

By: Plastic surgery channel1


A prosthetic known as cohesive gel breast implants, only available in the United States through special clinical trials, seems to be developing a successful reputation elsewhere. This product has garnered 15 years of use abroad, with favorable opinions from surgeons in Europe. These implants have undergone years of testing in America, but some may rightly wonder what the delay in widespread availability is.
Cohesive gel implants have apparent advantages and disadvantages that tilt them back and forth on a balance – just like the units that are widely available here today.
Considering the drawbacks to breast implants as we know them by now, the cohesive gel units almost seem miraculous. They are similar to the common American counterparts in being made of silicone. But rather than being a “shell” filled with silicone gel or saline solution, the cohesive implant is much more firm all the way through. It is a semi-solid prosthetic that appears to maintain its breast shape rather than having this shape compromised by ruptures and leaking.
This is because the implant contains thick silicone gel rather than the thinner form more often seen in America. No fluid content is involved, making massive leaks impossible. Some studies have described the texture as having a “gummy bear consistency,” which means that if such an implant were to crack or be damaged, its contents would hardly move.
A lack of thin fluid content also means this implant won’t shift in shape and produce the “rippling” effect that we see occur in American breast implants that contain saline.
But the advantages make way for some of the disadvantages. The nature of the cohesive gel implant gives it a firmness that many may find too stout. Its “stubborn” form means that the implanted breast maintains whatever one shape the patient chooses before surgery, and she is then stuck with that decision. And because this is an implant that does not shrink or collapse, it cannot be fit into the body through tiny incisions. The surgeon is forced to make larger cuts.
Cohesive gel implants also do cost much more than the American silicone versions, usually by several hundred dollars. However, the price could be an acceptable problem, since this implant’s rupture-free nature might cost less in the long run than opting for softer implants.
Cohesive gel implants are not impossible to have in America, but the list is limited. The medical companies Allergan, Mentor and Silimed offer trial implantations to qualified patients. Further approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is being sought.

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The availability of cohesive gel breast implants is sure to be an ongoing topic in the world of body contouring. Rely on The Plastic Surgery Channel for any updates.

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