Breast Implants


Breast Implants Essay, Research Paper

Theresa Ann Vasquez

Mr. P. Landino

English 106

22. January 2001

Breast Implants

Why would a woman get breast implants? Is it needed or wanted? In some might say that they are ?needed? for women who need reconstructive surgery due to breast cancer. Others might say that they ?want? the implants to make them feel better or look better, which comes from low self-esteem. Whatever your reasons are, obviously we all agree that the decision is of a very personal nature. A decision that poses a serious threat because of the possible risks involved. There are many illness and disorders you can experience.

Breast Implants have been around since the 1960?s. Dow Corning was a well-known manufacturer of the once silicone filled implants. In 1992, FDA ruled that they be taken off the market. There were so many complications that in 1994, if you had a rupture of your silicone implants you were denied health insurance (internet-connect). Since then saline implants have taken over but the potential illnesses and complications are still present.

As Dr. David Feigal, director of the FDA?s Center for Devices & Radiological Health (onhealth.webmd) explains, ?women should understand that breast implants do not last a lifetime?. In fact, additional surgery may be needed because they tend to deteriorate over time. Twenty percent of the women needed additional surgery after only three years. Women who use implants for reconstructive reasons are more likely to need those additional surgeries than someone who only did it to have bigger breasts. The irony of this point is, implants interfere with mammograms making it difficult to make accurate readings of a potentially cancerous lump. The technicians must be reminded that you have implants or else there is also the risk of rupture from the test itself.

The attractions for most women who want implants are very few but powerfully motivating and persuasive. First there is the price. You can expect to pay anywhere from $4,500 or more (onhealth). Second, there is the recovery time. Most women go home the same day and are back to work in a week. In a short period time of only five weeks the swelling goes down enough to see your accurate dimensions. Third, the scarring is minimal. At first the incision is red and lumpy but then fades into thin white lines that are hardly noticeable (onhealth). We even use silicone for other implants such as artificial heart valves, artificial joints, and Norplant contraceptives. Only point is those implants don?t rupture or leak into your body and cause you to feel ill. If they did they would have stopped making them a long time ago and turned to medical devices that didn?t contain silicone.

Women tend to let the following information go in one ear and out the other. Implants may move from their original position. Making them look uneven or unnatural. They may leak or deflate causing damage to the surrounding tissue making it necessary for immediate removal or replacement. If they become covered by thick scare tissue, they could cause the breast to become hard and too painful to touch. You may even experience loss of nipple sensation. You can have dimpling and puckering at the implant site. These experiences are only the beginning.

There is now a new disease they call silicone toxicity and immune dysfunction syndrome (epcha). Scavenger cells called macrophages are picked up by silicone and carried through out the body. This causes the onset of molecular damage called free radical or oxidant injury. What happens is the body?s defense mechanisms turn on itself, causing an autoimmune reaction (onhealth). It?s best described as a war within the body that can make you weak and suffer from chronic fatigue. You can also suffer damage to your joints, skin and internal organs. The frequencies of these complications are very controversial, yet no one denies they occur.

In conclusion, I propose these personal questions. Is it really worth the risk? Don?t we have enough diseases and illnesses to worry about already without making our bodies suffer yet another? Life is full on personal decisions and some of them will affect your health. So, no matter what you decide to do consider this. What you think will make you feel or look better may in fact make you look or feel worse. Get all the facts. Pay close attention to all the fine print and make your decision from there.

Work Cited

The Manufactures Covered Up.

The Breast Implant Story.16 April 1996.

Silicone Immune Toxicity Syndrome.1998*

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