Breast Implant Cancer

Breast Implant Cancer
Breast implants have been linked to a rare form of cancer called anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). According to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), breast implant cancer has claimed the lives of at least 9 women.

Attorneys Investigating Breast Implant Lawsuits

The nationwide law firm of Bernstein Liebhard LLP is investigating breast implant lawsuits on behalf of patients who were diagnosed with anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) in the wake of breast augmentation or reconstruction. If you or someone you love developed this rare cancer following breast implant surgery, please call (888) 994-5118 to discuss your potential case with one of our attorneys today.

Breast Implants and ALCL: What’s the Problem?

The FDA first warned of a possible link between breast implants and ALCL in 2011. At the time, the agency asked all breast implant manufacturers to update their product labeling to include this possible risk. Doctors were also asked to pay particular attention to patients who presented with fluid around their implant. However, the FDA was unable to determine what factors increased risk for the disease due to  the limited number of cases reported up until that point.

By March 2017, the FDA had received 359 reports of ALCL in breast implant patients, including nine deaths.

“All of the information to date suggests that women with breast implants have a very low but increased risk of developing ALCL compared to women who do not have breast implants,” the FDA reported in an updated alert.

Most cases of breast implant cancer occurred in women who had textured, rather than smooth devices. Of the 231 reports to the FDA that contained information about the implant, 203 had textured surfaces. 312 of the 359 reports included information on implant fill types. Of these, 186 reported implants filled with silicone gel and 126 reported implants filled with saline.  Read More

What is Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma?

It is important to note that ALCL is NOT breast cancer. It is a rare form of non-Hodgkins lymphoma that affects the cells of the immune system.  In patients with implants, the cancer occurs in the breast, usually in scar tissue around the implant. However, ALCL can also occur in the skin or lymph nodes.

Symptoms of ALCL breast implant cancer may include:

  • Persistent swelling or pain in the vicinity of the breast implant
  • Evidence of (seroma) fluid collection around the breast implant
  • Asymmetry of the breast
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Tiredness
  • Night sweats
  • Weight loss
  • Painless swelling in the armpit, neck or groin
  • Enlarged lymph nodes

ALCL is generally slow growing, and is treatable if detected early.

“Follow your doctor’s instructions on how to monitor your breast implants. If you notice any changes, contact your health care provider promptly to schedule an appointment,” the FDA said. “Get routine mammography screening and ask for a technologist specifically trained in performing mammograms on patients with breast implants.”

Contact an Attorney Today

Bernstein Liebhard LLP is now offering free, no-obligation legal reviews to alleged victims of breast implant cancer. If you or a loved one were diagnosed with ALCL following breast implant surgery, please call (888) 994-5118 to ensure that your legal rights are protected.

  1. FDA (January 2011) “Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (ALCL) In Women with Breast Implants: Preliminary FDA Findings and Analyses”
  2. FDA (March 2017) “Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL)”
  3. FDA (March 2017) “Questions and Answers about Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL)”
Last Modified: May 2, 2017

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