Breast cancers continue to plague women in Texas and elsewhere. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued a safety communication indicating that the agency has identified a minimum of 19 cases of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) in breast implant capsules. Some of the cases have been identified in published literature.
The details of the warning
SCC is the second most common form of skin cancer. If discovered early, it can be easily treated and cured. If treatment is delayed, the disease can be disfiguring and deadly. Health experts estimate that 1.8 SCC cases are diagnosed each year, and that the rate has doubled over the last 30 years. The FDA advised health care providers and women with breast implants to pay particular attention to the symptoms of SCC.
In issuing the current warning, the FDA stressed that the cancers that are the subject of the warning are different from anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL), a cancer that caused the FDA to issue several previous warnings. A number of lawsuits alleged that the design of certain breast implants were known to increase the risk of developing this cancer.
Several years ago, the FDA began requiring manufacturers to provide warnings to users about the risks of developing ALCL. Allergan issued a recall for its textured Biocell implants in 2019. Several women sued Allergan, alleging that the company failed to warn patients of the risk of developing ALCL. Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against Allergan, claiming that the implants were sold with no warnings about the potential risks associated with the product.
Getting legal support
Women who are considering breast implants should carefully review the risks of such products with their health care provider. Anyone who has used an Allergan breast implant product may wish to contact an attorney who is experienced in defective medical product litigation for an evaluation of the medical record and an opinion on the wisdom of proceeding with a lawsuit for damages.