Health Canada updating safety review of breast implants
Published Tuesday, February 12, 2019 3:20PM CST
Health Canada says it will update its safety review of breast implants following an increase in reports of cancers associated with them.
The federal government has received 22 confirmed and 22 suspected Canadian cases of breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) as of Jan. 1, 2019.
In its initial safety review in 2017, Health Canada had only 5 confirmed Canadian cases of BIA-ALCL.
It’s expected the updated safety review will be completed in the spring.
Health Canada says it will take action as required and inform Canadians and healthcare providers.
BIA-ALCL is a rare, but serious type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (a cancer that affects the immune system) that may develop many months or years after a breast implant procedure. It usually presents as an accumulation of fluid between the implant and the surrounding tissue.
The cancer occurs with both saline-filled and silicone gel-filled implants.
Health Canada suggests that people with breast implants should conduct regular breast self-exams and consult a healthcare professional if unusual changes, including breast pain, sudden swelling, or lumps develop.