On March 21, 2017, issued an updated Safety Alert regarding the connection between breast implants and a type of rare, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma called breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL). Women who were diagnosed with ALCL following breast implant are urged to contact an experienced breast implant lymphoma lawyer to learn about their legal rights and if they are eligible to seek compensation for their injuries.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration found a potential link to breast implants and a rare type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2011. Since then, significant research has been done allowing the long-term outcomes to be studied. Thus far, data is suggesting an increased risk in developing ALCL in women who receive breast implants.

Typically, patients who develop BIA-ALCL undergo surgery to remove the implant, though some are treated with radiation and chemotherapy. Physicians are urged to consider BIA-ALCL when their patients suffer persistent, late onset seroma, though some patients presented with hardening of the area around the implant, or lumps and masses near the implant.

Textured Breast Implants vs. Smooth

According to the FDA, the agency has received at least 359 reports of BIA-ALCL, 231 of those reports included information about the surface of the implant. Of those,

  • 203 involved textured implants
  • 28 involved smooth implants

312 reports including information about the type of fill used in the implants. Of those,

  • 186 implants were filled with silicone
  • 126 were filled with saline

The data suggests that ALCL occurs more with textured surface implants, but the FDA warns that details about fill type and surface type are limited and may change over time as more information is reported. Women are urged to speak with their doctors

What Should You Do If You Have Implants?

Currently, the FDA recommends that all patients discuss the risks and benefits of breast implant types are discussed with your physician before you receive the device and that patients who already have implants should continue self-exams and follow-up routines.

Patients who notice changes in their breasts after the implant surgery is healed, or who feel lumps, pain, and swelling of the breast, should speak with their doctors promptly. Patients who have been diagnosed with BIA-ALCL should speak with a breast implant lymphoma lawyer to learn about their rights and how the law protects them from medical devices that hurt them. These patients may be able to seek compensation through a breast implant cancer lawsuit for their injuries.