Although “gummy bear” breast implants have not yet been approved by the FDA, their worldwide popularity has many clamoring for the cohesive silicone implants. A recent poll on ImplantInfo revealed that 51 percent of 800 readers would be willing to wait for FDA approval before undergoing breast augmentation
This newer type of implant, which has been approved for use in Europe and Canada, is popularly known as the “gummy” bear implant for its firm, sticky texture. According to plastic surgeon Dr. Steven Teitelbaum:
“Today’s silicone gel breast implants are far more cohesive, less likely to leak and less likely to spread than the more ‘liquid’ implants of the ‘70s and ‘80s – the type of silicone that gave breast implants a bad name.
What are the Benefits of Gummy Bear Implants?
These implants are stickier than older breast implant
models. As a result, they are better at retaining their form and soft texture. Other advantages include:
- superior shape retention
- less frequent hardening of scar tissue (capsular contracture)
- less likely to cause folds
- lower chances of shell collapse
- less likely to leak
Of course, there are also some disadvantages with these implants, beginning with reduced flexibility and firmer feel. They’re more expensive than other implants and require longer surgical incisions. As well, with cohesive gel implants, there is a danger of distortion if the implant rotates within the breast. Nonetheless, as indicated by the ImplantInfo surgery, there seems to be significant interest in bringing gummy bear breast implants stateside.
Why Haven’t Gummy Bear Implants Been Approved Yet?
Dr. Teitelbaum says that the FDA is being cautious before approving a new medical device, but the implants may be available as early as this year.
“The FDA’s job is to be sure that medical devices sold to the public are safe for them. When fiascos like those with PIP
happen, it delays the process because it worries everyone. But the data from (Gummy Bear) implants are better than for any other implant to date. It seems inevitable that they will get approved.”
Image source: Pumbaa80, Wikimedia Commons