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Do You Have PIP Implants?

Do you have PIP Implants?  Probably not, as PIP breast implants were only widely available outside the US. However if you do have, or suspect you might have, PIP breast implants, you will want to remove these implants. Poly Implant Prostheses (PIP) was a French company that made silicone breast implants and I remember seeing them displayed at plastic surgery conferences several years ago.  I never used them, and they weren’t available in the US (although I’m sure some may have been brought into the US and used anyway), but if you had your implants placed overseas, you may want to check.  Countries where these implants were available include England, France, Argentina, Venezuela, Brazil, Germany, and the Czech Republic.  They were also marketed under the name M-implant by the company Rofil Medical in the Netherlands and distributed in Germany by Rofil Medro.

The PIP implants have a higher rupture rate than other available implants, but more importantly, they used an industrial grade (as opposed to a medical grade) silicone, which means the possibility of impurities and adverse effects of rupture are unknown.

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery along with the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons supports the recommendation of French authorities to remove these implants as a precaution.  Check your implant ID card if you had implants placed overseas, and if you don’t have your card, contact your implanting surgeon to find out.  The PIP implants can be removed and replaced with implants from Mentor or Allergan (previously McGhan), which both make FDA approved implants of established quality.

-Douglas J. Mackenzie, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Douglas J. Mackenzie, MD

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