Women concerned about the link between breast implants and cancer should contact a plastic surgeon.
Most implants are filled with saline or silicone. The saline implant supposedly deflates more easily. Silicone has a more natural feel.While there is no documented proof in the medical literature, some health advocates believe silicone can lead to cancer or other chronic illnesses if it leaks through the rubbery sack enclosure. The substance, used in implants for 25 years, has been linked to cancer in laboratory rats, although researchers say it's a kind of cancer not found in humans. Some believe the foam covering used on some implants, intended to prevent scarring, may break down in the body.
Another brand of implant has just been introduced in Utah, the Misti Gold. According to Medicor sales representative Dick Frost, about 200 women in four western states have received the implants since January. The inflatable implant is filled with an organic gel, poly-vynal pyrrolidone, familiar as the substance used as a plasma extender or coating on a tablet.
In addition to other concerns, breast implants also can block images during mammograms, making it more difficult to detect breast cancer, radiologists say.
Despite the ongoing controversy, the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons reports in a study of 592 women with breast implants, 92.5 percent were satisfied. And 82 percent of respondents said they would repeat the surgery.
"In 15 years, I've had only two patients who wanted their breast implants taken out," said Dr. Craig Davis, a plastic surgeon at Cottonwood Hospital.