Can You Develop Breast Implant Illness From Saline Implants?

By: Dr. Sean Kelishadi, M.D. FACS


Complications from breast augmentation surgery are relatively rare, though they can occur from time to time. Choosing a highly qualified, board-certified plastic surgeon is, arguably, one of the best ways to reduce your risk of surgical complications during or after breast augmentation. In some cases, however, your selection of implant type, implant size, or implant placement may also impact your risk level. Internationally recognized board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi and the award-winning team at SSK Plastic Surgery take extreme care to ensure each Newport Beach breast augmentation is as safe and successful as possible by utilizing the most advanced tools and techniques, as well as recommending appropriate implant selections for every patient. Learn more here about a rare complication, breast implant illness, and find out whether your choice of implant type may increase your chance of developing this condition.

What is breast implant illness?

Unlike many other breast augmentation complications, which are still exceptionally rare, breast implant illness (BII) is typically a diagnosis of exclusion. This means that a patient’s symptoms may be attributed to the presence of their synthetic breast implants when no other logical explanation or diagnosis can be reached.

What are the symptoms of breast implant illness?

The symptoms of BII can vary from person to person, and some patients may experience more severe signs and symptoms than others. Some of the most frequently reported symptoms associated with breast implant illness include:

  • Chronic fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Pain
  • Muscle ache
  • Headache
  • Brain fog
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dry skin, mouth, or eyes
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Thinning hair
  • Rash

What causes breast implant illness?

In most cases, there is no obvious cause of breast implant illness symptoms, though it may be associated with a low-grade infection or the body’s rejection or reaction to the synthetic implant. Additionally, the symptoms of BII can often mimic symptoms associated with another condition, so it is imperative that patients experiencing any of the above symptoms seek evaluation and diagnosis from their surgeon right away.

Which type of breast implant is safest?

Regardless of whether you choose saline or silicone breast implants, there is a small risk of complication, malfunction, or surgical error. By selecting an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon, patients can greatly reduce their risk of possible error. Furthermore, Dr. Kelishadi is exceptionally knowledgeable in the complex nature of matching each patient with their ideal size, shape, and type of breast implant. In addition to saline vs. silicone, patients should consider a number of other factors when choosing the most appropriate breast implant, including:

  • Body type
  • Personal goals
  • Current breast size
  • Amount of native breast tissue
  • Skin elasticity and thickness

Both saline and silicone gel implants are FDA approved and widely considered to be safe, long-term options for dramatically enhancing a woman’s figure. While complications can result with either type of breast implant, they are relatively rare.

Can you get breast implant illness with saline implants?

Yes. Women with saline implants and women with silicone gel implants have both been shown to have symptoms of breast implant illness, though this is a rare occurrence and often not a definitive diagnosis. In some cases, removing the implants results in a virtually immediate improvement in BII symptoms, though this is not always true.

While the risk of BII is not necessarily greater with saline implants, some patients do report more visible rippling and a less natural look and feel with saline implants when compared to silicone implants. This is particularly true for women with a low body fat percentage and minimal native breast tissue. A more serious type of breast implant illness, known as BIA-ALCL – which is actually a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma – has recently been connected to certain forms of textured breast implants, which Dr. Kelishadi does not use.

Although there is a small risk of developing certain breast augmentation complications, including breast implant illness, choosing an exceptionally experienced and board-certified plastic surgeon can largely reduce your perioperative and postoperative risks. Whether you are interested in saline or silicone breast implants, Dr. Kelishadi is committed to providing the highest level of care and expertise to ensure a safe procedure and stunning results.

Get the sexy, curvy, feminine body you’ve always wanted with safe breast augmentation in Newport Beach, CA

Going under the knife can understandably be frightening, but making informed decisions about your breast augmentation can greatly reduce your risk of possible complications. If you are interested in learning more about the life-changing benefits of Newport Beach, CA breast augmentation and have questions about breast implant illness, we invite you to call the knowledgeable team at SSK Plastic Surgery to schedule your private consultation with renowned board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi today. We look forward to helping you achieve or restore the body of your dreams with breast implants in Newport Beach, CA!

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.