Come join others currently navigating treatment in our weekly Zoom Meetup! Register here: Tuesdays, 1pm ET.
Fill Out Your Profile to share more about you. Learn more...

Health concerns of Allergan Textured implants

Options
1246712

Comments

  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    Mantra - I'm glad you were able to come to a decision that is right for you! At the very least you now have some info to refer to if needed, or to pass on to others who are experiencing these symptoms.

    Best of luck to you!

  • ab1234
    ab1234 Member Posts: 3
    Options

    Thank you all for contributing to this post. I am definitely not a "knee-jerk" kind of person with most medical issues...but seeing as I had -a preventitive double mastectomy due to intense family history, the BRCA gene, and many false positives from breast imaging...it makes me wonder if BRCA women may be more/less likely to get this BIA-ALCL cancer. I have not been able to find any research that directly relates to BRCA implant patients. Seeing as I got my implants at age 36 I've always known that I might either need new implants at some point in my life or may just choose to have them removed...I have no symptoms so am not going to freak out. But this whole phenomenon just feels like a cruel extension to what women already have to go through. Again, thanks to you all for your posts and wishing you all the best. :)

  • ndroby
    ndroby Member Posts: 16
    Options

    i am headed back to surgery and hadn't planned on doing this so soon. My plastic surgeon recommends having the textured implants removed,as the Australian study gave the risk of cancer at 1:1000! That's a bit too close for comfort! He believes there will be a class action lawsuit. Sign me up!

  • monkeymom
    monkeymom Member Posts: 27
    Options

    I have had the Allergen 410s for 6 years with no problems....until this week. I've been following all the media hype and had made the decision to wait and see. Within the last two weeks, my right non-cancer side has developed a weird bubbly, rippling along the bottom on the boob and there is an off/on burning sensation around the edges of the implant. He thinks possibility of mild capsular contracture due to silent rupture. Completely unexpected. I saw my PS yesterday and he wrote me a script for an MRI. Waiting for that to be scheduled.

    PS wants to switch out for smooth. If I had capsular contracture once, couldn't that happen again? I would really like to use fat transfer to create small (size A/B breasts). I'm not willing to do DIEP or TRAM and I don't want to be completely flat. But I'd be totally fine with small "natural" breasts made of fat!! I spent last night researching this and there seems to be many positives and a few negatives....one being the question of does that large amount of fat cells stimulate cancer growth? I certainly don't want to do anything to cause a reoccurrence.

    Has anyone's PS suggested reconstruction with fat as an alternative to flat or smooth implants?


  • scrafgal
    scrafgal Member Posts: 412
    Options

    Had mine removed and exchanged for a smooth one last week as part of a revision for symmetry on my natural side. Honestly, I couldn't feel better about it. I don't need anymore to worry about. I already had a smooth on my mastectomy side. The other side got a small textured for contouring and symmetry...not worth the risk for that purpose. I don't know whether I would have had another surgery just to remove it but I had a revision scheduled already for other things. So my decision was easy. If the FDA comes to a different conclusion next year, and recommends removing them, I didn't want to have another surgery. Here's what nailed it fir me: My MDA ps is no longer using them on new patients even though nobody is suggesting that we take them out. Frankly, I think think that the FDA is working on a plan to protect themselves before banning them. They want to avoid outright panic and lawsuits...not that they could avoid either

  • lovebeingnana
    lovebeingnana Member Posts: 9
    Options

    I had my Allergan 410's removed 1 week ago. Prior to removal all I could really say is they felt really weird - especially on the left side. Turns out, after only 5 years, both implants had failed! The left one was ruptured so bad it looked crushed and the right one was torn. I had smooth rounds put in and I'm so happy with them,,,still healing but they are much lighter and softer.

  • Giazuc
    Giazuc Member Posts: 10
    Options

    I'm having my Allergan biocell textured implants removed this Monday, May 27 because as a breast cancer survivor I don't want to take any chances. This is the second time I'm losing my breasts. I don't believe in the 'wait and see' approach. Back when I got diagnosed with breast cancer I choose to get a double mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. If I had known that the implants were 100% linked to ALCL, I would have never got them! The idea that I choose a left mastectomy and a right prophylactic mastectomy with these Allergan textured implants that are now linked to a 'man made' cancer is completely crazy!!! I'm just happy and relieved to be removing them. I have chosen to remain flat with no further reconstruction. After I heal I will consider fat grafting just to give myself a little bit of something.

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 13,184
    Options

    I still believe in 'wait & see'. The risk of additional surgery when everything is going well with me is NOT a choice I'd make. Besides I'm very happy with the anatomical shape. Below is a quote from an earlier post by Beesie. I'm comfortable with that minimal percentage of risk at this time. This is .002 and that's the worst case. If the numbers change substantially, I'll probably go have an MRI. In the mean time I'm not going to panic like I did when I first was diagnosed with breast cancer and all I wanted to do was "get rid of them" as fast as possible.

    >>>All that said, the risk remains low - a fraction of a percent. As I said in one of my earlier posts, the highest rate of occurrence I've seen to-date, from one particular plastic surgery practice, is 0.2%. All other estimates I've seen, even recent ones, have been lower than this, most significantly lower.

    Oh - and while we're at it, I don't believe in class action suits so I won't be talking to any attorneys no matter what happens.

  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    Monkeymom - studies have shown fat transfer does not promote cell growth (sorry I don't have the links at hand). I think the only downside is that fat necrosis can form if the fat dies, but any lumps can be scanned and biopsied if needed. I think with what we're learning about the safety risks with textured implants, this procedure will become more popular.

    ndroby - yes, I've seen 1:1,000 in reference to the Allergan 410s, and even though we don't know for certain, many folks believe it's just not worth the risk. You are so lucky to have a proactive and supportive PS!

    LovebeingNana - congrats on your explant! I've read that ruptures can go undetected on MRIs and that is very concerning. As for me, I am very glad I finally decided after many years of enduring pain to remove my Allergan 410s. On my cancer side I had pain that would come and go, and then it would swell at times. I was constantly running to the doc for scans. Like you, I knew something was not right, yet all my providers said it was fine. Final pathology showed chronic inflammation, fat necrosis and several types of bacteria on both my implants. I'm not sure if that's what was causing my issues, but it's gone now, thank goodness, and I'm feeling so much better!! I would support any woman's decision to explant - as only WE can know what is right for our bodies.


  • kjtm
    kjtm Member Posts: 7
    Options

    *****UPDATE******

    Health Canada officially bans Allergan textured implants!!

    image

  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    Interesting article. I don't think these issues with breastimplant safety are going to go away anytime soon.

    http://www.center4research.org/breast-implant-illnesses-whats-evidence/

  • angelfaith456
    angelfaith456 Member Posts: 33
    Options

    Bc101 - Thank you

    I have been struggling with pain in my legs and have been to several types of doctors. So far they don't know why. Going to a neurologist next week. This report will help me to ask questions that might be related to the implants.


  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    Good luck! I think you will find out if you haven't by now, that most doctors don't believe in breast implant illness (which is different than BIA-ALCL). They usually brush off symptoms as attributed to something else, but if you have multiple symptoms that are "not medically explained," there's a great Facebook group where you can find out more info about BII - https://www.facebook.com/groups/Healingbreastimpla...

    Let us know what you find out!


  • Carolx
    Carolx Member Posts: 1
    Options

    could you tell which brand and model you used?

  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    I had Allergan 410s.

  • mantra
    mantra Member Posts: 189
    Options

    I had an MRI last week to give me peace of mind that there was no malignancy. The good news is that it didn't show any cancer. The bad news is that it showed an intracapsular on one side. I saw the mri note when I went into my chart today and have placeda call into the plastic surgeon. I have the allergen textured implants. I imagine surgery will be required.

  • scrafgal
    scrafgal Member Posts: 412
    Options

    Mantra

    I am new to the implants so I have not had them checked by MRI yet. I think that the first check will be in 3 years and then periodically afterward. I am curious as to whether you had you checked before this recent MRI. I am wondering, how long did it take for the intracapsular rupture to occur...between years 8 and 10 or what? How often have you checked them via MRI, if you don't mind me asking?

  • mantra
    mantra Member Posts: 189
    Options

    I have never had them checked by MRI before. I had asked the PS and she said it’s not needed. Goes to show she was quite wrong. I’ve had the implants for approx 8 or 9’years so have no idea when this happened. nothing I can do now other than wait.

  • scrafgal
    scrafgal Member Posts: 412
    Options

    Thanks for letting me know.

    My ps sort of suggested that with the latest generation of implants, it wasn't necessary to check as frequently and that the standard of changing afterv10 years might not apply. He said, " these are newer and we think they could last 15 to 20 years or more.

    To be honest, I am highly claustrophobic and just the thought of an MRI gives me extreme anxiety. Being brave about bc treatment made me think that I could do an MRI for these implants * when the time comes) but I just panicked thinking about it the other day. I hope that I don't need to check on these frequently!

  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    Mantra - so sorry you are facing this. Was there any fluid that showed on your MRI? I hope you get answers soon.

    One of the results from the testimonials of dozens of women affected by breast implants at the recent FDA hearings was that the screening recommendations be more clear. Sadly, they only pushed them out further. Before I got my implants, I remember reading the brochure stating that women should get MRI's every 2 years to check for ruptures or other abnormalities. When I asked about it, my PS at the time poo-pooed it - saying screening was not needed and that it would not be covered by insurance. But I've had several MRIs over the past 5 years due to the pain that never seemed to go away. Nothing ever showed up, thank goodness. But after I explanted, my pathology showed the presence of bacteria and chronic inflammation - which is suspected as precursors to BiaALCL. So glad they are out of my body!

    Mantra, please keep us posted as you move through this. HUGS!

  • scrafgal
    scrafgal Member Posts: 412
    Options

    thanks for sharing that link bc101!

  • pi-xi
    pi-xi Member Posts: 177
    Options

    Thanks for the link, bc101! I’m coming up on three years and it saved me a call to the PS. 😊
  • mantra
    mantra Member Posts: 189
    Options

    I too am claustrophobic but didn’t find this mri to cause any anxiety ordiscomfort. Basically you’re lying on your stomach and it felt like I was lying on the beach. Same position. They give you earphones and although the machine is loud I kept making up songs in my head to the beat or the mri noise.

  • magari
    magari Member Posts: 335
    Options

    This article makes it sound like Canada has not just banned this particular type of implant, but that Allergan is recalling it there. https://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCAKCN1SY2BX-OCATP

    My implants are shaped textured, but Sientra brand. I had direct to implant, pre-pectoral surgery in October of 2017, with 6 rounds of chemo afterward.

    I'd attributed the bubble that was between the implant and the skin on my right breast to delayed healing or absorption of the Alloderm as a result of the chemo. But over the past few months it seemed to be getting larger, and a similar one starting to develop on the left. There was also rippling that hadn't been there initially. When I went in to see my breast surgeon for my annual checkup, she didn't think any of this was cause for concern re lymphoma, but she also didn't think it could be corrected non-surgically. So we agreed that my existing implants will be removed and switched to smooth round ones. I'm going to have some fat grafting done at the same time, mostly to fill in the dents that are where my ports used to be.

    Although I am not thrilled at the idea of another surgery, I will be relieved to have these issues addressed, with lab tests to check things out. And start fresh with new implants that my body will hopefully like better!

  • GG27
    GG27 Member Posts: 1,308
    Options

    I have bubbles under my right implant & on the right side of my left one.

    Because I am stage IV, I am having a terrible time trying to find a PS who will replace them, most PS's don't want to deal with someone else's reconstruction. I have had them for 9 years & never had them checked. So I saw my original PS a couple of years ago about scar tissue, he wouldn't even check them & said because I am on "palliative chemo" (his words not mine) I shouldn't worry about ever checking them or changing them out. I guess he thinks I'm on the brink of death. I do more physical labour in a day than most people do in a week. My PCP has sent him a stern letter as of today, imploring him to do the right thing & have a scan of the implants.

    Anyone else having this problem? Any ideas on how to get some resolution? I am going to join the class action lawsuit out of Montreal.

  • scrafgal
    scrafgal Member Posts: 412
    Options

    GG27

    That doctor should be reported to the AMA and/ or the board of his hospital!

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 13,184
    Options

    GG27 - yes you should have some scans - an MRI and maybe a Pet CT depending on the results of the first. Wherever we are, I agree most surgeons don't want to take over someone else's work.

    I would find out what your issue is before pulling the trigger on joining a law suit. I know Canadian medicine is different so not AMA, but I agree that the doctor should be reported to someone.

  • bc101
    bc101 Member Posts: 923
    Options

    GG27,

    That is outrageous! Shame on him! I hope you can find a more compassionate PS, although those seem to be rare. I encountered quite a bit resistance when I went in for my explant consult - much to my surprise. I had to push for removal as the surgeon was hesitant and tried to talk me out of it. I had to convince her, even though I had pain and swelling, to remove them. Really? We are the customer - they work for us! You should not be denied treatment no matter what stage you are. This is not cosmetic surgery!I agree, he should be reported. Please keep us updated.

  • lisey
    lisey Member Posts: 300
    Options

    GC, the way to bypass roadblocks is say you are in PAIN. They are then forced to address it. Lots of surgeons won't do revision surgery on flat women thinking it's superficial, so the woman says the bumps and mounds of extra skin cause pain and the surgeon is then FORCED to deal with it. "PAIN" is the key to getting shit done.

  • GG27
    GG27 Member Posts: 1,308
    Options

    Thanks everyone for your thoughts. The pain one I hadn't thought of, but they do cause me pain sometimes, so I guess I will exaggerate that & see if I can get them replaced.

    The class action lawsuit is for anyone who has the Allergan 410 implants, not just if you're having problems. I doubt it will amount to much of anything but may as well get in line in case it does.