In a new report released by US Food and Drug Association (FDA) it is learned cancer could be linked to textured breast implants.
The agency received 359 reports anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL), which is also called cancer of immune system, and 231 of those were linked to breast cancer. After determining the surfaces of implants it was found 28 had smooth and 203 had textured implants.
However, it is yet to know why textured implants may cause such kind of breast cancer.
Data reveals about 300,000 women opt for breast implants each year in the US.
Types of implants
In the US two types of breast implants are approved. One is saline and the other is silicone gel-filled implant. Even though all the implants have silicone-made outer layer but those can differ in sizes, textures, shapes and even thickness.
There is no particular data about how common are textured implants, but it is said such practice is common. If believed to Dr. David Song, immediate past president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), breast implant surgeons use them interchangeably. Even though link between ALCL and implants is rare, but it is real. Researchers need to find out the cause.
Why textured implants
Usually scar tissue is formed around the breast implant and it creates complications by becoming hard and tight. Called as capsular contracture, the problem can lead to distorted look of the breasts and in several cases may cause pain. It is believed textured implants prevent forming of such scar tissue. Also, textured implant provides more distinct shape that is more ideal for many.
How cancer is linked
It is not yet correctly known how cancer is linked to the textured breast implants. Some research says a bacterial coating is developed and this increases infection risk, cancer, or even implant failure. However, as the link is not definitive, FDA has called for more research.
Things to know
Persistent swelling or pain around the implant is the first symptom to ALCL. The symptoms may not be immediate. It can take years after the implant. Even though such cancer is rare, but women should be aware.
Gretchen Burns, a nurse consultant at FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), said live of devices varies from woman to woman and all of them need additional surgeries sometime in life that is not particular.
FDA warns the longer a woman has the implants, the risk is higher.
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