“Gummy Bear Implants” – What Are They?

Although silicone breast implants have gone through rigorous testing and scrutiny from the FDA and have subsequently been found to be a safe and reliable tool for breast augmentation and breast reconstruction, they have been unable to totally shake that negative reputation (unjustified, in my opinion) from the past. In reality, the silicone implants that have been used since the FDA allowed them back into the market are quite different from the implants of the “20th Century” in that the current gel is much more cohesive.

You may have heard a lot of talk recently about a new silicone breast implant nicknamed “the gummy bear implant”. One of the most obvious curiosities and questions surrounding the recent buzz is that, contrary to what the nickname indicates, they are not found in a candy store and we wouldn’t recommend trying to eat them!

Most plastic surgeons are advocates of silicone breast implants, and the gummy bear implant (preferably called “high-strength cohesive silicone gel implant”) seems as though it may be a promising device. All jokes aside, they are similar to the popular chewy candy in that when they are cut in half, they remain stable and retain their shape. These new implants are being touted as the future of silicone breast implants as they may finally put the fear of “leaky” or ruptured silicone breast implants to bed.

Previously, the high-strength implants were only available in America to those who were willing to participate in the initial clinical trials. Years later, they were approved by the FDA in March 2012. Though it’s cautioned that, as with any new product, there should be a keen awareness of potential risks and long-term use, many of the American patients from the clinical trials six years ago have reported being pleased with their result and have been free of complications.

In our office, we practice diligence in safety and research prior to jumping in to the latest fads. We do, however, remain optimistic from the reports and feedback of this particular development, and we encourage patients to discuss their questions about the gummy bear implant openly and candidly.