Implants and Breast Cancer: What’s in the Way

Implants and Breast Cancer: What’s in the Way

A new study published in the British Journal of Medicine explored the relationship between breast implants and breast cancer.

The study, which is an intensive review of carefully selected earlier studies involving women with cancers that have spread, demonstrated several important points for women with implants.

There is good news that comes from this study.  First, implants don’t have to be in the way of self breast exams. Also, there is also no evidence that implants themselves increase the likelihood of getting breast cancer.

The study did find that women with implants that later develop breast cancer might be diagnosed with a later-stage cancer up by to 26 percent compared to women without breast implants.  Another finding of the study was that the mortality rate for women with implants was increased by 38 percent. So they found that women may be diagnosed both later stage and with a higher mortality rate than women without implants.

Part of the problem is that mammography is limiting for patients with implants.  Tissue can be hidden by the implant.

What does this mean for women with breast implants? Altogether, clinical breast exams by your doctor or health care provider, self-exams, and regularly scheduled mammograms are essential. Mammograms may be augmented with further types of imaging, such as breast ultrasound and MRI exams at the recommendation of a primary care provider.



Originally posted 5/1/13 on