Popular Cosmetic Procedure Is Killing Women

Everywhere you look there are women who are trying to fit the standards society has laid out for them.

Advertisements are flooded with outliers on the body image scale, sporting outfits that are unrealistic.

The truth is that women are beautiful and diverse, but when they try to fit into a proverbial box it can have deadly consequences.

Many forms of self-improvement are sought after by millions of women.

Whether it’s starting a new fitness routine or diet (we have all been there), or more extreme measures of body modification like lip implants and other surgical procedures, women are pressured into becoming a “better” version of themselves.

Why is it that women have a hard time respecting and loving the self they are in the moment?

Culprits include gaining attention from men, wanting to look like someone else, advertising from fashion industries, wanting to escape from life stressors, and the list goes on.

Some women are learning the hard way that procedures to enhance glorified body parts can do more harm than good.

Health officials are now saying that cancer is linked with receiving breast implants, a warning that was previously dismissed despite years of speculation.

Fox News reports:

The Food and Drug Administration sent a letter Wednesday to family doctors, nurses and other health professionals warning about the form of lymphoma that affects breast implant patients. In suspected cases, the FDA recommends laboratory testing to confirm or rule out of the disease. It’s the first time regulators have issued a direct warning to doctors other than plastic surgeons.”

Dr. Binita Ashar, of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), released a public statement on the “the danger of women getting cancer after having breast implants,” according to the Daily Wire.

A shocking 457 women in the U.S. have already been diagnosed with the rare cancer anaplastic large cell lymphoma, reports NBC News, with 9 of these unsuspecting women already dead.

Anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) is a type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma which attacks cells in the immune system.

Contrary to what one may think, the cancer is not a form of breast cancer, but instead is found around the breast implant in the fibrous scar, called a capsule, that results from the body trying to separate from the implant.

This is a natural bodily defense of any foreign material in tissue. Things that are not meant to be in our bodies, our systems will try to eliminate- think a splinter in the skin, or the liver eliminating toxins.

Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to detect right away if you have developed BIA-ALCL.

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reports:

“BIA-ALCL usually develops as a delayed swelling of the breast (Average 8 years, range 2 to 28 years) after the insertion of textured breast implants, which may present as fluid collecting around the implant or marked breast asymmetry. It can also present as a lump in the breast or armpit.”

Cases of the rare cancer have been on the rise, with 414 cases in the past year, according to the Daily Mail, compared to 359 cases the year before.

Out of the two types of breast implants, smooth and textured, it seems most cases are related to the textured implants. However, this does not mean those with smooth implants are not in danger.

The most popular breast implant, silicone gel or saline filled, were first put on the market in the United States in the 1960s.

It took a little while for the fad to catch steam, but by the end of the ‘90s nearly a million women had breast augmentation surgery done, according to Our Bodies Ourselves; and this was before any safety studies were performed.

So, why did the FDA go so long without putting these medical devices under scrutiny?

In 1976, the FDA decided to make silicone gel implants go through the 501k process, which is where the product just had to be compared in a letter to another medical device that has already gained approval.

It wasn’t until 1991, after almost a million women already had the device in their body, that the FDA required suppliers of silicone gel implants to go through their own testing for approval.

In the years leading up to our present-day misfortunes, implants have been banned and reinstated for use multiple times.

Recent reports by the FDA state:

We recognize the limitations of medical device reports, which is why we review other sources of information, including medical literature and the Patient Registry and Outcomes for Breast Implants and Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma Etiology and Epidemiology. PROFILE collects real world data regarding patients who have a confirmed diagnosis of BIA-ALCL. Our participation in this registry reflects the FDA’s commitment to implementing our Medical Device Safety Action Plan, in which we are streamlining and modernizing how we implement postmarket actions to address device safety issues to make our responses to risks more timely and effective.

With great augmentation being the most popular kind of cosmetic surgery, according to Our Bodies Ourselves, we hope it is not too late for thousands of women who have undergone the transformation.

It is not only the woman who is getting the implants that is affected, it is the perception of women by society as a whole.

In addition, young women in the family are gaining a skewed perspective on what healthy body image is, as Mommy Underground has previously reported, and how to love the skin they are in.

While some breast surgeries are to maintain normalcy, as in the case of cancer patients who had received mastectomies, most are attempts at self-love.

We must continue to support one another as strong, empowered women, designed with purpose and affection.

Please let us know in the comments section if you or someone you know has been affected by the repercussions of breast augmentation.