FDA Report Links Cancer to Breast Implants

According to a report from the FDA, nine people have died from a rare cancer that is associated with breast implants. This particular cancer is called anaplastic large cell lymphoma. It is a blood cancer that attaches the immune system. It typically appears in the organs, lymph nodes, or the skin.

The link between breast implants and this cancer was announced last week after six years of research. The first connection came to the FDA and implant manufacturers’ attention in 2011. At this time, manufacturers have addressed the concern with packaging inserts. While 359 cases have been reported, the FDA says that the exact number is limited due to reporting and implant sales data limitations.

Certain Implant Types Sees More Cases

Researchers indicated that textured implants led to more ALCL cases. These types of implants actually attach to the surrounding tissues. This type of implant is often preferred by surgeons over the smooth type. Implants filled with silicone or saline did not appear to have a difference.

At the current time, the FDA is not recommending any drastic changes. Women who already have implants are advised to continue to follow the usual post-op medical care, with the knowledge that the risks are “low but increased compared to women who do not have breast implants.”

Augmentation Continues to be a Popular Procedure

Breast augmentation continues to be the most common and popular cosmetic procedure. It is interesting to note that implant removal procedures rose last year from 2015 numbers. In addition to the increased risk of ALCL, the FDA also indicates 26 other potential implant complications, including breast pain and necrosis.

Alternative to Implants

There is a wonderful alternative to implants that does not have the same risks and possible complications. Breast augmentation by fat transfer offers great results and also provides a more natural look and feel.  This procedure uses the patient’s own body fat to augment the breasts, which essentially eliminates the risk of any allergic reaction or rejection.

Dr. Wright says, “The fat transfer procedure has been very successful in producing natural looking and feeling results. And with fewer risks and complications, I find it a much better choice than implants in most cases.”

If you are interested in knowing more about breast augmentation, we invite you to schedule a complimentary consultation where we will discuss and explain all the various options.