Breast implants have been linked to a rare cancer in women

Breast implants have been linked to a rare cancer in women

Breast implants have been linked to a rare cancer in


Victoria's leading healthcare body, Safer Care Victoria, issued a public safety notice this week for women who have had breast implants after a link to a rare type of cancer was discovered.


Anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL), a non-lymphoma Hodgkin's cancer of the immune system, has been found in a small number of women who have had breast reconstruction procedures, with cases developing three to 14 years after the implant surgery. Cancer cells are thought to grow in the fluid and scar tissues that form around the implant.


Women who have had the procedure should be on the lookout for swelling caused by fluids around the implant, as well as pain, rashes, or lumps on their breasts, according to Safer Care Victoria.


"Please contact your doctor right away if you notice any changes, as this cancer is highly curable if detected and treated early," Safer Care Victoria said in a statement.


"There is no need to remove your implants if you don't have any symptoms." The removal of implants, as well as the use of anaesthetics, entail surgical risks."


According to health experts, the risk of BIA-ALCL varies depending on the type of breast implant used, and cases occur in one in 1000 to one in 10,000 patients.


Each year, between 5000 and 6000 breast implant or reconstruction procedures are performed in Victoria.


The Therapeutic Goods Administration, the Australian Government's medicine and therapeutic regulatory agency, has recorded approximately 76 cases of BIA-ALCL across the country. Sixteen of those cases originated in Victoria.


In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) discovered a possible link between breast implants and cancer in 2011. The ALCL has an annual incidence of 0.25 cases per 100,000 people in the country. A study published in 2018 discovered a link between breast implants and an increased risk of BIA-ALCL.

A year later, the FDA issued a warning to healthcare providers about a possible link between all breast implants. The agency notified doctors of 573 cases of BIA-ALCL around the world, including 33 deaths.


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