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Could ruptured breast inflate be causing my health problems?

Question posted by easunderland from United States

I have a ruptured breast implant. It deflated back in 2009 after my son fell on me when we slipped on slick rocks and I’ve not had $4500 to get it replaced. I’ve had health problems since 2010. Is it possible that this could be the cause? I turned 45 in March and I have  arthritis from my neck to my thumb to my great toes, not to mention the neurological problems. My labs are normal other than a mildly elevated TSH with T3 T4 being WNL. My CBC w/ diff does suggest inflammation and it has for over 3 yrs. I had to give up my nursing career due to general fatigue, headaches and cervical spine pain. What’s wrong with me???

Doctor's Response

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2 thoughts on “Could ruptured breast inflate be causing my health problems?

  • While it’s doubtful that your breast implant shells are creating your “fatigue syndrome”, implants can be covered with a “biofilm” of bacteria that may cause chronic irritation and inflammation( and hence your CBC findings).  That’s why breast implant removal may benefit you.  Nothing trumps an in-person consultation and recommendation from a board certified plastic surgeon.  If you saw me, I would likely recommend removal and leaving them out permanently, or replacing in the future if desired.  But doing this as a staged procedure to see if your symptoms improve.Don’t wait any longer to have them removed- which BTW should cost less than $4500.  and your health insurance may actually cover removal since you are having problems which may be related to your implants.Best wishes for a successful outcome.

    Steven Yarinsky, MD, FACSBoard Certified Plastic SurgeonSpecializing in Cosmetic Surgery of the Breasts

    Over 25 Years of Experience ; Visit http://www.yarinsky.com

  • Dear easunderland,

    Thank you for your clinical post and sorry to hear of your ongoing health concerns and problems.  Deflated saline implant or a fractured cohesive gel implant can certainly cause local breast pain and discomfort.  Some of this local pain can be regionalized and can be a source of ongoing discomfort, inflammation and even fatigue.  In the past there have been some controversy whether or not breast implants contribute to the development or exacerbation of systemic conditions such as Chronic Fatigue Syndromes, Lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma or dermatomyositis. 
    It is generally believed by most health bodies such as Health Canada, the FTA and the EU that breast implants either the solid silicone shells of a saline implant or the shells in the cohesive gel fill do not lead to Chronic Fatigue Syndromes or immunologic and autoimmune diseases.  However, one can never be certain in medicine and if you have ongoing pain and discomfort you should be under the care of good rheumatologist or internist that can search for some of the causes of your general neurologic localized, general and systemic pain and fatigue symptoms.  Removal of the breast implants would at least minimize local pain and discomfort.  The aesthetic consequences of removal can sometimes be mitigated by fat grafting to the breast tissue once the implants
    have been removed.  Explantation of the implants and reimplantation of new implants would likely lead to more superior aesthetic result, but may mitigate ongoing local pain and discomfort on the
    affected side.

    I know it sounds as though there is no simple solution and the advice of your operative surgeon is the best place to start for management of your breast concerns.

    I hope this information has been of some assistance and best of luck.

    For more information, please review our breast augmentation
    page.

    R. Stephen Mulholland, M.D.

    Certified Plastic Surgeon

    Yorkville, Toronto

Additional Information

Breast Augmentation (Augmentation, Mammaplasty, Breast Enlargement or Breast Implants)

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