The UK’s National Health Service expert group, which had been set up to look at the safety of PIP breast implants has now published its final report.
The group, which was led by Professor Sir Bruce Keogh has been collecting and reviewing data, including estimated rupture rates, data on clinical findings when implants are removed and examination of the chemical make-up of PiP silicone gel. The expert group studied information on 240,000 implants of different makes used throughout England which have been given to 130,000 women, along with detailed results from 5,600 removal operations.
The findings of the expert group are as follows:
- World-wide testing of the PIP gel material has not revealed anything which could cause a long term threat to human health.
- The implants are not toxic or carcinogenic.
- The implants have a higher rupture rate-around 2 times higher. The rate of rupture appears to be around 6-12% after 5 years arising to 15-30% after 10 years. This compares to 10-14% after 10 years for other brands of implants.
- PIP implants have a hard concentration of certain compounds called siloxanes, chemically similar to silicone but of a lower molecular weight and found in many consumer products to include hair and skin products. It does not present a health risk.
When the implants rupture it has been found to cause reactions around the implant area in a small proportion of women which can cause symptoms such as tenderness or swollen lymph glands.
Speaking today about the Keogh report, Liam Moloney, Solicitor who is representing many women affected by the PIP implant scandal said “ it is clear that PIP implants are more likely than other implants to rupture earlier with consequential damage and health risk for patients. Many women who experience implant rupture will also develop local reactions to silicone. Surgeons and clinics in Ireland who have used these implants have a legal and moral responsibility to immediately take steps to remove and replace these implants free of charge. They should also compensate patients who have suffered mental anxiety and trauma associated with this scandal.’’
Mr Moloney added ‘’ if the private cosmetic clinics fail to take these steps the Department of Health and the IMB should force the clinics to properly compensate and treat women affected by this scandal. The IMB also have a responsibility in this matter given the fact that they are the competent authority in Ireland for the regulation of the cosmetic industry.’’