Shaped versus Round Implants in Breast Reconstruction: A Multi-Institutional Comparison of Surgical and Patient-Reported Outcomes

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Since the 2012 approval of shaped implants, their use in breast reconstruction has increased in the United States. However, large-scale comparisons of complications and patient-reported outcomes are lacking. The authors endeavored to compare surgical and patient-reported outcomes across implant types.


The Mastectomy Reconstruction Outcomes Consortium database was queried for expander/implant reconstructions with at least 1-year postexchange follow-up (mean, 18.5 months). Outcomes of interest included postoperative complications, 1-year revisions, and patient-reported outcomes. Bivariate and mixed-effects regression analyses evaluated the effect of implant type on patient outcomes.


Overall, 822 patients (73.5 percent) received round and 297 patients (26.5 percent) received shaped implants. Patients undergoing unilateral reconstructions with round implants underwent more contralateral symmetry procedures, including augmentations (round, 18.7 percent; shaped, 6.8 percent; p = 0.003) and reductions (round, 32.2 percent; shaped, 20.5 percent; p = 0.019). Shaped implants were associated with higher rates of infection (shaped, 6.1 percent; round, 2.3 percent; p = 0.002), that remained significant after multivariable adjustment. Other complication rates did not differ significantly between cohorts. Round and shaped implants experienced similar 2-year patient-reported outcome scores.


This prospective, multicenter study is the largest evaluating outcomes of shaped versus round implants in breast reconstruction. Although recipients of round implants demonstrated lower infection rates compared with shaped implants, these patients were more likely to undergo contralateral symmetry procedures. Both implant types yielded comparable patient-reported outcome scores. With appropriate patient selection, both shaped and round implants can provide acceptable outcomes in breast reconstruction.


Therapeutic, III.

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