Breast implant illness/mold. Any suggestions?

I've been considering implants for awhile now. I've been doing tons of research but mostly good. Just today I decided to look at the cons and I'm wondering about breast implant illness and mold. Is this a real thing? Or is it from women against implants? I've been kind of taken back now from this

Doctor Answers 5

Are breast implants safe? What we know and what we don't...

Ever since the initial moratorium on the use of silicone gel implants (1992), numerous myths about their safety or lack thereof have persisted.Implants have been extensively tested and studied by the FDA. There are no links to autoimmune disease (a commonly held belief). Additionally, there is no evidence in the literature of implants and associated "mold." The FDA recently issued a statement regarding ALCL. The FDA believes that women with breast implants MAY have a very low but increased risk of developing anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). FDA review of literature from January '97 through May '10 identified only 34 cases of anapestic large cell lymphoma in women with breast implants worldwide. In Additional information from other international regulatory agencies, scientific experts and breast implant manufacturers has yielded a total of approximately 60 cases of ALCL in women with breast implants. Ultimately, ALCL is exceedingly rare and of very low concern to those with implants or considering implants.As always, discuss your concerns with a board certified plastic surgeon.

Westchester Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Breast implant illness/mold. Any suggestions?

That's pretty scary, to think of mold in the implants. There have been instances when someone would photograph an old saline implant that was brown to demonstrate this "mold". That is the betadine antibacterial product some surgeons used to put into the saline when they filled it. Mold has never even been a suggestion in the prefilled silicone products. Neverhteless, you should never do a surgery that will make you uncomfortable and constantly worried. 

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Breast Implant Illness/Mold?

Very early in the use of saline implants there were sporadic cases of mold growth reported. It was felt to be due to a failure of technique in filling the implants using sterile saline placed in an open basin. Mold spores are present in the air around us, even in a very clean OR environment. It is believed that these airborne spores caused the contamination.  For many years now saline implants have been filled using a 'closed system' in which sterile saline flows directly from an IV bag into the implants without exposure to the air. In 21 years of practice, I have never seen mold growth using this technique.Silicone implants are pre-filled and packaged in sterile containers. They are generally opened immediately prior to placement, limiting any potential contamination prior to insertion.

Michael F. Bohley, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

This is Extremely Unlikely

Breast augmentation is a very low-risk procedure. The likelihood of mold growing inside implants is extremely unlikely. Selecting a board certified surgeon at an accredited facility will help to minimise your risks.

Breast implant illness/mold. Any suggestions?

Breast implants are among the most tested of medical devices. No other medical device has been studied to the extent that breast implants have. Extensive studies of tens of thousands of women with breast implants have shown that both saline and silicone implants are safe. They do not produce a higher rate of breast cancer or autoimmune disease. After vigorous evaluation by the FDA, both are approved for cosmetic and reconstructive usage.

The majority of patients having breast augmentations are very pleased with their results. No one should enter into that procedure with the idea that the implants will last forever or that they may never need another breast surgery. There are a variety of reasons why a woman would have a secondary procedure: to alter the size of the implants as the patient ages and the size and shape of the breast naturally change, to correct the effects of pregnancy on the breasts, weight fluctuation, the implant can form a capsular contraction around it which produces a hardening, or the implant may leak. No one can guarantee the life cycle of an implant.

Robert Singer, MD FACS

La Jolla, California  

Robert Singer, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.