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Implant Focus Shifts to Implant-Related Cancer January 27, 2011

Posted by Dreamhealer in Big Pharma.

A mix of caution, approval, and a touch of I-told-you-so greeted the FDA announcement that breast implants have been linked to a rare form of lymphoma.

In general, emphasis on the rareness of the disease and its association with breast implants predominated among physicians and surgeons familiar with the situation.

Plastic surgeons and a lymphoma specialist told MedPage Today that the 34 cases of anaplastic large-cell lymphoma (ALCL) among U.S. breast-implant users — and about 60 cases worldwide — are not a reason for deep or widespread concern.

Moreover, the FDA found itself on the receiving end of kudos from the medical community, as plastic surgeons applauded the agency for bringing the issue out in the open and heading off a potential flood of concern.

“I am very pleased that the FDA has brought this to light and that the plastic surgery organizations are working together with the FDA for the safety and betterment of our patients,” Alan Matarasso, MD, a plastic surgeon at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, told MedPage Today.

In an email response to MedPage Today and ABC News, Miami plastic surgeon Constantino Mendieta, MD, noted that the FDA pointed out that “ALCL associated with breast implants is extremely rate. A woman is more likely to be struck by lightning than get this condition.”

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