French authorities have urged 30,000 women to remove potentially life-threatening, rupturing breast implants, reports say.
The concerns are that implants supplied by Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) used a non-authorized silicone gel in their implants, which are prone to splitting with a series of negative consequences. Dr. Laurent Lantieri, chairman of the plastic surgery service at the Henry-Mondor University Hospital in Creteil, a suburb of Paris, stressed serious concern by saying, “We have to remove all these implants … we’re facing a health crisis linked to fraud,” Liberation reports.
Government spokeswoman Valerie Pecresse, a member of a special committee formed to investigate the issue, highly recommended that “all women who have PIP implants should return to see their surgeons urgently.”
Since the defects were discovered, 523 implants have been removed and eight cases of cancer had been reported in patients with PIP implants. Although there has not been any evidential proof of a direct link between the silicone used in PIP implants and cancer, investigations by the French Society of Plastic Surgeons came to the conclusion the silicone used was not suitable for medical use. One PIP implant patient died of cancer in 2010.
The attraction of PIP implants was their low cost; they were the cheapest available. However now it seems the ultimate cost proves that slightly more expensive and much more medically friendly implants might be worth saving for. Jean-Yves Grall, France’s director general of health, assures that all costs in conjunction with the corrective surgery and complications will be reimbursed.