Breast Implant HazardsPublished: Dec 19, 2019 in Medical Malpractice, Personal Injury
Women considering breast implants should be aware of serious complications as recent studies have reported higher rates of autoimmune diseases in women, among other conditions. Safety measures are being put into effect so that women are aware of potential health complications before undergoing surgery for breast implants.
Breast implants are silicon sacks filled with saltwater or silicon gel. The purpose is to enlarge the breasts for cosmetic reasons, but also to rebuild them after a patient undergoes a mastectomy after breast cancer. Breast reconstruction after cancer surgery accounts for 100,000 procedures per year. In 2018, over 300,000 breast augmentations were performed.
Risks of Breast Implant Complications
According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), risks of serious complications include joint pain, fatigue, and the potential risk of developing anaplastic large cell lymphoma, a rare form of immune system cancer. In July, Allergan, one of the manufacturers of breast implants, recalled textured breast implants that were linked to cancer. Many illnesses have been linked to forms of connective tissue diseases, such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
Safety Measures are Not Mandatory
Because of potential complications, agency officials are urging manufacturers to print a warning on implant packaging. They are also recommending that manufacturers provide a checklist that spells out the risks for patients who are considering surgery. Although these warnings are recommended, they are not mandatory and are open for public comment and industry input. It is also recommended that surgeons go over the checklist with patients who want to get breast implants before they put down a deposit.
The checklist and boxed warning measures were developed as a result of breast implant patients who testified at an advisory panel meeting that they had no idea there were safety risks associated with breast implants before surgery.
Thousands of Women Reported Illnesses
Thousands of women with breast implants have reported debilitating illnesses, including weakness, cognitive impairments, and severe joint and muscle pain. Many breast implant studies carried out by manufacturers or plastic surgery associations did not track long-term outcomes. In addition, the studies only focused on defined illnesses and not debilitating symptoms that did not have a clear diagnosis.
FDA Calls for Action
The FDA wants a boxed warning on packaging that tells patients that breast implants do not last a lifetime and that the risk of developing complications increase the longer they have the implants. The warning should also inform patients that breast implants are linked to anaplastic large cell lymphoma.
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If you or someone you know was injured or developed an illness due to a medical procedure or device, contact an Edwardsville medical malpractice lawyer at The Cates Law Firm, LLC. Our experienced lawyers will fight to obtain the compensation you deserve for your pain and suffering. For a free consultation, contact us online or call us at 618-277-3644. Located in Swansea, Illinois, we represent victims throughout Belleville, Carbondale, East St. Louis, Granite City, Edwardsville, Chester, Waterloo, St. Louis, Madison County, St. Clair County, Monroe County, and Randolph County.