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Concerns over PIP implants

06/01/12: Over 250 British women are to set to sue clinics over low cost PIP silicone breast implants which are prone to rupture

Around 40K UK women have received the potentially harmful silicone breast implants which were made by the French company P.I.P. who are now bankrupt The implants were filled with silicone of a non-medical grade which is thought to have been designed for mattresses, therefore makes them more susceptible to damage.

Almost all the surgery which used the PIP implants in the UK took place in private clinics.

The PIP implants have already been linked to 8 cases of cancer in France.

It has been reported that the Government in France is planning to fund the removal of the
Implants for the 30,000 French women who have them and who are also taking legal advice.

A member of the British women’s legal team has commented that although we would prefer to pursue claims against PIP or their insurers, it will not now be viable. Therefore a class action will brought to a hearing in Cardiff as our efforts to persuade the clinics to resolve the issue without litigation has so far failed.

The relevant regulatory authority, the MHRA and many European experts have already said that there is no evidence of incidents of cancer associated with the PIP implants.

Reports which have been submitted to the MHRA intimate that only about 1% of the UK women with PIP implants have suffered any failure or rupture.

The figure is less than the 5% which is being reported by the French medical regulatory authority.

A British plastic surgeon has said that the message is not to panic and our original advice remains the same.

Women with the PIP implants should ask to be checked over by the clinic which carried out the surgery and to be subsequently monitored.

These implants do have a higher than usual failure rate and so some women may choose to have them removed as a precautionary measure, although others will prefer to be monitored.