France discovers 20 cancer cases with PIP implants

Updated: 2011-12-31 10:27


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France discovers 20 cancer cases with PIP implants

Silicone gel breast implant manufactured by the now-defunct French company Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) is displayed at the Paris Breast Center in Paris Dec 28, 2011.  [Photo/Agencies]

PARIS - French health agency confirmed on Friday that 20 cases of cancer were reported in women with breast implants of a French brand.

As of Tuesday, "there were three cases of lymphoma, 15 cases of breast adenocarcinoma, the most common form of breast cancer, one case of adenocarcinoma of the lung, and one case of acute myeloid leukemia," said the French Health Products Safety Agency (AFSSAPS), referring to allegedly faulty implants produced by the Poly Implant Prothese (PIP).

But "no accountability has been established to date between these cancers and the wearing of PIP implants," the agency said.

The French Health Ministry last week advised 30,000 women to have their PIP implants removed because of an increased risk of rupture to avoid the risk of cancer though no conclusive evidence was found linking to the disease.

The recommendation came after eight cases, mainly breast cancer, were reported among women with PIP implants.

Authorities in other countries also advised women to consult their doctors over the implants.

The French company PIP was once the world's third-largest producer of silicone implants which sold its products to tens of thousands of women in over 65 countries and regions, mainly in South America and Western Europe.

The company was found to replace the medical-grade silicone in its implants with unauthorized material that caused abnormally high rupture rates of its implants. After that, its products were banned and the company went bankrupt in 2010.

The US government already raised the alarm over the company in 2000.