FDA Confirms Breast Implant Link To Cancer

PBC is currently investigating claims for victims who received breast implants and were later diagnosed with cancer. We are taking cases in response to the FDA’s recent 2017 alert regarding the elevated risk of a type of blood cancer, Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (ALCL), that is associated with certain types of breast implants. Our experienced attorneys have handled many defective medical device cases and consistently provide skilled representation for our clients. Contact us today at (888) 725-2477 for your free consultation.

2017 FDA Alert On Cancer Risk With Breast Implants

Research shows that breast implants can carry a risk of dangerous side effects, including cancer. As of February 2017, the FDA has compiled 359 medical device reports on victims who have breast implants and were subsequently diagnosed with cancer. Over 200 of the reports involved implants with textured surfaces rather than smooth surfaces, and nine of the cases ended in patient deaths. Textured surfaces are generally used to help tissue regrow around the implant.

In its most recent report, the FDA says it has improved its understanding of the link between breast implants and ALCL and now concurs with the World Health Organization that ALCL, a rare T-cell lymphoma, can develop following breast implants. In its new report, the FDA stated, “All of the information to date suggests that women with breast implants have a very low but increased risk of developing ALCL compared to women who do not have breast implants.”

What Are the Symptoms of ALCL?

ALCL is not breast cancer, but a non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that appears in lymph nodes, bones, skin, lungs, liver, or soft tissue. For those with breast implants, the symptoms do not occur in the implant itself, but in the “capsule” behind the implant. The implant is placed in the chest muscle or behind the breast tissue and typically a capsule develops around the implant, which is a fibrous scar that is separated from the breast tissue. ALCL develops around the capsule, rather than in the breast.

Women typically experience the following ALCL symptoms:

  • lumps or masses around the implant
  • pain
  • collection of fluid around the implant
  • hardening of the area around the breast
  • asymmetric breast size

These symptoms may not present until years after implant surgery.

Patients who have been diagnosed with ALCL may be able to treat their cancer by having the implants removed, as well as the capsule surrounding the implants. Radiation and chemotherapy may also be available treatment options.

How Do I Find Out If I Have A Case?

If you or a loved one have or previously have had breast implants and experienced any of the above symptoms of ALCL, contact PBC today for a free consultation.