Huge rupture rate in breast implants
Many of the inplants had ruptured
Almost seven out of ten silicone-gel breast implants scanned by researchers had developed a leak.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) study could reawaken the debate over the safety of breast implants.
Many women claim that leaking silicone-gel has sparked serious illness, including chronic autoimmune disease.
The FDA team used MRI scans too look at 344 women with implants.
They found that 69% had a least one ruptured implant.
And in 21%, the silicone gel contained within the implant had leaked beyond the breast into other parts of the body.
In another part of the study, 907 women who had undergone breast enhancement surgery were interviewed.
Removed implants Recently published studies have shown that women with silicone gel-filled breast implants do not have a greatly increased risk of some well-defined autoimmune diseases, which were among the serious health concerns surrounding the devices. These include potentially fatal connective tissue diseases such as scleroderma and lupus erythematosus.
The new studies do not, however, rule out the possibility that a subset of women with implants may have a small increased risk of these conditions, or that some women might develop other immune-related symptoms that don't conform to "classic" disease descriptions.
Nor did the studies address other important safety questions, including implant rupture rates and the incidence of capsular contracture (shrinking of scar tissue around the implant, which can cause painful hardening of the breast or distort its appearance). Answers to these and other questions await the results of new or ongoing studies.
Widespread reports of adverse reactions to silicone gel-filled implants and a lack of evidence supporting their safety led the Food and Drug Administration to order the devices off the market in April 1992. They