In July 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration requested that breast implant maker, Allergan issue a recall for their Biocell breast implants over cancer concerns. An analysis showed the implants were six times more like to increase the risk of breast implant-associated lymphoma cancer than other implants.
People who were implanted with Allergan BIOCELL implants and were diagnosed with BIA-ALCL are seeking compensation for their injuries, treatment costs and other damages. Others may be seeking compensation for expected costs associated with cancer concerns.
As part of the recall issued for all of the BIOCELL textured breast implants and tissue expanders, Allergan agreed to pay for replacement implants but has not agreed to any other costs caused by concerns over the devices.
People who received the implants may be eligible for compensation for costs and damages such as:
- Cancer treatments
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Surgical removal
- Medical or diagnostic testing
- Medical monitoring and future costs
Allergan Biocell Natrelle Textured Breast Implant Recall
A specific type of breast implant-related cancer was identified in 2016 by the World Health Organization (WHO) as “breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma” or BIA-ALCL and is classified as a T-cell lymphoma or a type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. BIA-ALCL develops in the scar tissue or capsule that forms surrounding a breast implant and is more likely to occur in textured breast implants than smooth breast implants.
Allergan, maker of Biocell textured breast implants has been linked to a higher than normal risk of BIA-ALCL and in December of 2018, the company suspended sales of its implants in Brazil, Australia, Israel and all 33 countries of the EU. The following May, in 2019, Canada suspended Allergan’s manufacturing license for the Biocell implants but no action was taken in the U.S.
In July 2019, analysis of BIA-ALCL reports showed that Allergan Biocell textured implants posed a six times greater risk for the cancer than other brands of textured implants, prompting the FDA to ask that Allergan recall the products.
The recall covers Allergan Biocell implants including:
- Allergan Natrelle Silicone-Filled Textured Breast Implants
- Allergan Natrelle Saline-Filled Breast Implants
- Allergan Natrelle 140 Highly Cohesive Anatomically Shaped Silicone Filled Breast Implants.
Allergan’s recall includes coverage for the cost of implants or replacement devices. It does not include coverage for the cost of surgery to remove or replace the implants, for any diagnostic or medical testing, or medical monitoring to ensure that no cancer develops.
People who have received Allergan Biocell Breast Implants are filing lawsuits to seek compensation for costs associated with removal or replacement and with cancer concerns. Individuals of loved ones of those who were diagnosed with BIA-ALCL may also be seeking compensation for more extensive treatment costs and damages due to cancer diagnosis.
Breast Implant-Associated Cancer
Breast implant-associated cancer is a specific type of blood cancer called “anaplastic large cell lymphoma” or BIA-ALCL. It is a type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, also called a T-cell lymphoma which causes the T-cells to produce an excess amount of the protein known as anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK1) that increases the growth of certain cancer cells or “lymphomas”.
People who have textured breast implants are at a higher risk of BIA-ALCL than people whose implants are “smooth”. Textured implants may increase cancer risk through inflammatory processes which are caused by scar tissue formation in the “capsule” that develops to hold implants in place.
In addition to the increased risk of BIA-ALCL that occurs with textured implants, Allergan implants cause an even higher risk. Allergan Biocell textured implant cancer risk is reportedly six times higher than other implant brands and 84% of the 573 reports of BIA-ALCL, including 33 deaths, were associated with Allergan implants.
When detected early, BIA-ALCL may be treatable by removal of the implant and the surrounding tissue but the cancer may spread or metastasize to other areas of the body and may require chemotherapy or radiation.
Reports show that the time from breast implant surgery to cancer diagnosis is a median of about 8 years and many women are choosing to have their implants removed. The recall does not currently cover the cost of medical treatments or surgery and many women are choosing to file lawsuits to seek assistance.
Allergan Breast Implant Lawyer
People or loved ones of those who were diagnosed with BIA-ALCL cancer after receiving an Allergan BIOCELL textured breast implant may be eligible for compensation through a medical injury lawsuit and should seek legal assistance. Each case is unique, but compensation may be available for medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering or wrongful death.
In addition, people who received an Allergan Biocell Naturelle textured breast implant or tissue expander are filing lawsuits seeking compensation and coverage for costs associated with increased cancer risk and removal of the implant. Lawsuits may be seeking coverage for costs such as surgical removal, diagnostic testing, medical monitoring and other costs.
Contact an attorney for legal advice.