This past month, France urged 30,000 women to remove their breast implants, which were manufactured by the now defunct company Poly Implants Protheses (PIP) – the company was closed down because its silicone implants contained industrial silicone, instead of medical-grade silicone. The breast implants also seem to be more likely to rupture.

The PIP breast implants were sold in Western Europe, South America and Australia. About 40,000 British women have PIP breast implants, and Britain has suggested women consider removing the breast implants due to a high risk of failure; both Britain and France maintain there is no proven link between the ruptured PIP breast implants and a higher risk of cancer.

There is no indication PIP implants have ever been used in a US breast surgery. PIP breast implants were never approved for use in the US; however, American women who traveled to foreign countries, particularly South America, for breast enlargement could conceivably have PIP breast implants.

When your health is at stake, selecting an approved medical device is important. While French officials investigate just how the faulty PIP breast implants made their way into the market and into the bodies of hundreds of thousands of women worldwide, the event is an opportunity to revisit the importance of choosing your procedure and your surgeon carefully. Although PIP implants are not offered in the US, you should always select an experienced plastic surgeon offering approved silicone breast implants from Mentor Corporation or Allergan, the two companies approved to provide silicone breast implants in the US.

If you are interested in learning more about breast augmentation and breast implants, and if you live in the Dallas, Texas area, please contact experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Vasdev Rai at the Cosmetic Surgical Center to schedule a consultation.