Breast implants in focus after cancer death

The implants shown here are not PIP implants.

Two women have developed serious illnesses after they received defective French-made silicone breast implants. Last week, a woman died from lymphatic cancer thought to have been contracted from her breast implants.

A 36-year-old woman called Leaticia was diagnosed last month with ruptured breast implants, according to the French daily Aujourd’hui en France.

Her implants burst six months ago and the silicone gel has leaked into her shoulders, breasts and ribs. Leaticia was operated on in Spain where she received breast implants manufactured by Poly Implant Prothèses (PIP).

Another women who received PIP implants has been diagnosed with lymphatic cancer. It is not yet clear what caused the cancer, but doctors advising a group representing the victims of PIP breast implants suspect the silicone gel used in PIP implants.

French implant manufacturer PIP was closed down by health authorities last year after they discovered the company was using non-medical silicone gel in implants which were twice as likely to rupture as other products in the same category. The company CEO is accused of fraud.

While it is feared that the silicone gel used in the PIP implants is linked to cancer, French health watchdog AFFSAPS has not been able to establish a link.

Last week, a woman – the first in France – died of lymphatic cancer in the southern city of Marseille after her PIP breast implants burst.

It is feared 44,000 women are still carrying PIP breast implants, which were sold in France, Spain and the United Kingdom.

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