The silicone breast implant scandal

One of the happiest days of my life was when I finally got my implants taken out after some thirty years of problems with them.  I love my implant free boobies.

From The Guardian UK:

The US and UK authorities must think women are either stupid or worthless to permit this shameful profiting from their suffering

Naomi Wolf
, Wednesday 15 February 2012

I have heard, in my life, many implausible statements from government officials, but never have I heard or seen anything quite as egregious as what I witnessed as a guest on the BBC’s Newsnight program on 7 February 2012. Twenty-five frightened and suffering women had agreed to appear in the studio to ask questions of Anne Milton, a health minister for the UK coalition government. They had all been implanted with PIP (Poly Implant Prothèse) breast implants, which had been withdrawn from the EU market in 2010, after revelations of high rupture rates and confirmation that substandard – believe it or not, industrial – grade silicone had been used.

In December of 2011, French authorities advised that these PIP implants be removed; other countries’ health authorities took similar action. Britain was not one of them. French authorities, according to the World Health Organization global advisory, “also found that the gel containing non-approved silicone was an irritant to tissue, and when leaking could give rise to inflammation and pain.”

When I was researching The Beauty Myth, in 1991, I was reading British medical journals that informed me about the terrible health problems caused by silicone breast implants. I was shocked to see that even as women’s magazines were promoting the hell out of them, the medical journals – which women would not see – were offering doctors insurance on implants because the rate of rupture was 30-70%. The side-effects were right there in the journals: up to 70% of implants would harden “like golf balls” and rupture, sending silicone into parts of women’s bodies, with unknown consequences.

Similar warnings paid off in the US: silicone implants were banned in 1992. But Britain never followed suit. Now, though, British women like the ones in the Newsnight studio are facing the nightmare that they were never informed of the dangers of silicone by any government body, even as private, Harley Street doctors made fortunes continuing to push implants. And now, with the PIP scare, the NHS is faced with providing millions of pounds’ worth of care to remove the implants and give women MRI scans to check for ruptures. It is in this context that I was astonished to hear the health minister say these words to a roomful of scared women:

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