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When it comes to breast augmentation there are many different options to choose from. Implants come in different sizes, shapes and materials. However, the most commonly misunderstood characteristic of breast implants is their "profile."
Implants are available in several different profiles including low profile, moderate profile, moderate plus profile, high profile, and ultra-high profile.
The profile of a breast implant refers to how much an implant projects forward from the chest wall when standing. Implants of the same size (cc volume) that have different widths will produce different levels of projection. Implants with a smaller base width provide greater projection as compared to implants with a wider base width.
Low Profile Implants: Implants that are lower in profile are relatively flat in appearance and minimally project the chest. This type of implant is ideal for women with wider chests.
Moderate Profile Implants: Implants with a moderate profile tend to yield the most natural-looking results. As the name implies, they provide more projection compared to low profile implants but not as much as high profile implants. Moderate implants are typically ideal for women with smaller or narrower chests.
High Profile Implants: This type of implant is extremely narrow at the base to provide maximum projection. High profile implants yield the fullest and most rounded results, which may look less natural on some patients. However, high profile implants are often ideal for petite women who have a narrow chest wall.
The ideal profile differs from patient to patient based on two considerations: the patient's body proportions and the result they are seeking to achieve.
Body Characteristics: The current proportions or figure of the patient should be considered, as the same implant will look completely different on two different women with different chest types. During a pre-operative consultation, your plastic surgeon will take measurements of your chest to anticipate how implants of different profiles will look after the surgery.
Ideal Result: Do you want your breasts to look more subtle or natural? Or would you prefer a fuller or rounder look? Your plastic surgeon will work with you to understand your goals and suggest a profile that will achieve them.
For more information, including a list of ASPS plastic surgeons in your community, please use our Find a Plastic Surgeon tool.
The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.