At Partington Plastic Surgery, we feel that it is important that patients are aware of all safety information regarding breast implants. Recently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released an update regarding breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL).
Although breast implant surgery is a safe procedure, there are risks associated with it, as with any form of surgery. Although extremely rare, BIA-ALCL can develop around breast implants. This form of cancer is very rare and is not a type of breast cancer.
The treatment for BIA-ALC includes surgical removal of the scar tissue capsule, as we as removal and replacement of the breast implant. Following treatment, the majority of BIA-ALCL patients receive an excellent prognosis.
Although it is difficult to determine the exact number of BIA-ALCL cases, the FDA has reported 359 medical device reports as of Feb 1, 2017. Patients should take into account that the database used to collect this information may contain limited or inaccurate reports, and therefore, may not be able to be truly relied upon to represent the true number of cases in the U.S.
As of today, there have also been no cases associated with smooth implants. The FDA continues to share the thoughts that BIA-ALCL is a rare condition that can occur in patients with textured breast implants. It is always important to discuss possible risks with your doctor before undergoing any form of surgery.
Overall, BIA-ALCL is a rarely fatal disease that is still being studied. Currently, the number of confirmed cases is incredibly small, and the statistics really are not clear enough to draw a true conclusion.
So, now that you are armed with this information, what can you do? If you are a woman with breast implants, it is important to maintain your routine follow-up appointments with your plastic surgeon. Also, be sure to conduct monthly self-exams on your breasts to detect any possible early signs of cancer.
Doing your homework and staying informed with facts is the smartest way to stay up to date on plastic surgery information. Good places to search for information include scientific journals and studies, as opposed to certain online sources or magazine. For more information regarding BIA-ALC, visit www.fda.gov.
Here is additional information from Sientra. It is always best to seek the information you require from one of our Board Certified Plastic Surgeons.