Dangerous Side Effects of Breast Implants

Breast implants come with many risks and possible side effects. Some complications of breast implants include:

  • Rupture (occurs as a result of deflation in the case of saline-filled implants),
  • Breast pain, and
  • Scar tissue forming around the implant and squeezing it.

Even death has been confirmed as a possible side effect of breast implants, as reported by the FDA. A small number of women that receive breast implants can get a very rare type of cancer known as ALCL (anaplastic large cell lymphoma).

There are two main types of breast implants: saline and silicone. While both consist of an outer shell of silicone, the difference lies within the inner contents. Saline implants are filled with saline (or sterile saltwater) while silicone implants are filled with silicone gel. Both type of implants pose a risk of rupturing. These may be caused by surgical error, a fall, or in rare cases, pressure exerted on the breast during a mammogram. The chance of rupture increases with the length of time the patient has the implant. In a study conducted by FDA scientists, most women had at least one case of breakage within 11 years.

With breast implants it is harder to breastfeed and also harder to detect breast cancer. Other known complications of breast implants include: infection, memory loss, disfigurement, and necrosis (skin death). Infection can result from bacteria and mold being released from the implant into the body. Malposition or displacement can occur when the implant is not placed in the correct position in the breast, causing disfigurement. This can possibly happen either during surgery or afterwards if the implant moves or shifts from its original location.

Side effects and risks should be taken into consideration before any decision on surgical procedures. With breast implants there are many possible complications and the effects vary in severity. The longer a person has breast implants, the more likely she is to experience complications and adverse outcomes. Many breast implant patients end up needing re-operation.