BAPRAS speaks out for patients about PIP breast implants

Media Release- 23 December 2011

The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) and the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) have spoken out about the use of PIP breast implants and reiterated the importance of both clinics and patients putting safety-first when they chose to undergo cosmetic procedures.

Consultant Plastic Surgeon Tim Goodacre, President of BAPRAS, said:

"The conflicting announcements from the French and UK authorities about the health risks of the PIP breast implants will be causing considerable anxiety for women in the UK. While the evidence shows that there is no need for panic as there are no proven links with cancer, the probable increased risk of rupture and potential irritation of the sub-standard silicone gel used in these implants means it would be sensible for the implants to be removed whilst they are still intact."

Consultant Plastic Surgeon Fazel Fatah, President of BAAPS, said:

"Some patients will want to have PIPs removed as a preventative measure and this is an entirely rational approach in view of the quality issues associated with them.  If women are concerned or experience adverse symptoms they should see their surgeon, to discuss options such as having a scan to determine whether there is any weakening or rupture. If there is, we reiterate our previous recommendations: to have both implants removed. We believe there is a moral and ethical obligation on the clinics who performed these operations in the first place to facilitate the removal of the faulty implants for free or at the bare minimum cost."

Both BAPRAS and BAAPS recommend the women involved consult a competent, responsible plastic surgeon with any concerns.  Ideally they should return to their original implanting clinic, but if that is not possible they should seek a second opinion from a BAPRAS member. All BAPRAS members are fully registered plastic surgeons holding the highest qualifications in their field and able to offer objective advice on individual circumstances.  

If any women with breast implants have noticed a change in their breast (such as the appearance of a lump, pain or hardness) they should, as always, seek advice from their surgeon.