There is no specific test for “breast implant illness,” as it is not an officially medically recognised condition. However, there are tests that can be used to evaluate symptoms that some women attribute to their breast implants.
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For example, if a woman is experiencing fatigue, joint pain, and muscle weakness, her doctor may perform blood tests to check for autoimmune diseases like lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. If a woman is experiencing chest pain or shortness of breath, she may undergo imaging tests like X-rays or MRI scans to check for any complications with the implants.
In some cases, women may request to have their breast implants removed due to concerns about breast implant illness. If a woman is experiencing symptoms that she believes are related to her breast implants, it is important for her to discuss these concerns with her doctor, who can evaluate her symptoms and recommend any necessary testing or treatments.
It is important to note that the scientific evidence does not support the notion of a specific condition called “breast implant illness.” The majority of women with breast implants do not experience any long-term health problems, and most symptoms can be explained by other causes.
What is Breast Implant Illness (BII)?
Breast implant illness is a term used to describe a range of symptoms reported by some women with breast implants. These symptoms can include fatigue, joint and muscle pain, cognitive difficulties, hair loss, rashes and other skin issues, among others. The exact cause of breast implant illness is not well understood, and there is limited scientific evidence to support its existence as a distinct medical condition. However, some women report experiencing improvement in their symptoms after having breast implant removal. Breast implant illness is a rare condition, and there is still little understood about the condition apart from the fact that the removal of breast implants can often significantly improve symptoms. It is important to rule out other medical conditions first before considering breast implant illness as a potential cause of your symptoms.
It is important to consult with a medical professional at Centre for Surgery to determine the best course of action for individual health concerns.
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Common symptoms of BII
Breast implant illness (BII) is a term used to describe a range of symptoms that some women with breast implants have reported experiencing. These symptoms can vary greatly between individuals and can include the following:
- Fatigue: Many women with BII report feeling fatigued, exhausted, or lacking energy.
- Joint and muscle pain: Some women experience joint pain, muscle aches, and other types of chronic pain.
- Cognitive difficulties: Some women with BII report having trouble concentrating, memory loss, and difficulty with mental processing.
- Hair loss: Some women report experiencing hair loss and thinning hair, which can be distressing.
- Skin issues: Some women with BII report experiencing rashes, acne, and other skin problems.
- Digestive problems: Some women with BII report experiencing digestive issues such as bloating, abdominal pain, and constipation.
- Sleep disturbances: Some women with BII report having trouble sleeping, feeling restless, or having vivid nightmares.
- Mood changes: Some women with BII report experiencing mood changes, including depression, anxiety, irritability, and mood swings.
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It’s important to note that many of these symptoms can also be associated with other health conditions, and not all women with breast implants will experience BII. It’s also important to consult with a medical professional to determine the best course of action for individual health concerns.
While the exact cause of BII is not well understood, some experts believe that it may be related to the presence of silicone or other materials in the implants, or to an immune system reaction to the implants. However, more research is needed to confirm these theories and to better understand the symptoms associated with BII.
What is the best treatment for breast implant illness?
Diagnosis of breast implant illness is the first step to planning appropriate treatment. Breast implant illness is still not officially recognised as a medical condition by medical experts in the UK. There is no definitive test to confirm or exclude the condition. We would recommend having a consultation with a specialist Plastic Surgeon to determine whether you have symptoms, suggestive of breast implant illness.
Many patients often develop several symptoms which can make activities of daily living difficult. People may often consult their GP to rule out other medical conditions.
Breast implant removal is the only accepted method of stopping, reducing or reversing the effects of breast implant illness. The incision used for breast augmentation is also used for breast implant removal. The best treatment for BII will vary depending on each individual’s symptoms, overall health, and personal preferences. Some common treatments for BII include:
- Implant removal: Many women with BII report improvement in their symptoms after having their implants removed. This is sometimes referred to as “explanation.” The implants are removed along with any breast capsule, and the incisions are closed. After breast implant removal, there are several procedures that can help to improve the appearance of the breasts, as they may appear deflated after removal. Treatment options include combining breast implant removal with a breast lift to restore perkier and youthful-looking breasts.
- Medical management: In some cases, treating underlying medical conditions or managing symptoms with medications can help alleviate symptoms associated with BII.
- Lifestyle changes: Making changes to diet, exercise, sleep patterns, and stress management can sometimes help alleviate symptoms associated with BII.
- Complementary and alternative medicine: Some women with BII turn to complementary and alternative medicine, such as acupuncture, massage therapy, and herbal remedies, to manage their symptoms.
It’s important to consult with a medical professional to determine the best course of action for individual health concerns. In some cases, a combination of treatments may be necessary to achieve the best results.
It’s also important to note that while some women with BII report improvement in their symptoms after treatment, others may continue to experience symptoms even after having their implants removed or undergoing other treatments. Further research is needed to better understand the underlying causes of BII and to develop more effective treatments.
What are my chances of getting breast implant illness?
The exact prevalence of breast implant illness (BII) is not known, and there is limited scientific evidence to support its existence as a distinct medical condition. Some estimates suggest that anywhere from a few percent to as many as 20% of women with breast implants may experience symptoms that they believe are related to BII.
It’s important to note that not all women with breast implants will experience BII, and the risk of developing BII is likely influenced by a variety of factors, including the type and composition of the implants, the individual’s overall health, and other factors that may increase the risk of developing symptoms.
How long does it take for breast implant illness to show?
It’s also important to note that not all women with breast implants will experience BII. Some women may have breast implants for many years without any symptoms, while others may develop symptoms soon after getting the implants.
If you have breast implants and are experiencing symptoms that you suspect may be related to BII, it’s important to consult with a medical professional to determine the best course of action for individual health concerns.
Is weight gain a symptom of breast implant illness?
Weight gain can be a symptom reported by some women with breast implant illness (BII). However, it’s important to note that weight gain can also be associated with a variety of other health conditions and factors, such as changes in diet, exercise habits, and hormonal fluctuations.
Not all women with BII will experience weight gain, and the exact relationship between BII and weight gain is not well understood. It’s also important to note that weight gain is not a universally recognised symptom of BII, and some women with BII may experience weight loss or no significant change in weight.
What types of implants cause breast implant illness?
Some women with BII attribute their symptoms to their breast implants, but the relationship between BII and breast implants is not well established, and there is limited scientific evidence to support any specific type of implant as being more or less likely to cause BII.
That being said, there are several factors that may influence the risk of developing BII, including the type of implant (saline vs silicone), the composition of the implant material (such as cohesive vs non-cohesive silicone), the surface texture of the implant (smooth vs textured), and the implant’s size and shape.
Learn more about Breast Implant Illness and Implant Removal at Centre for Surgery
If you think you may have breast implant illness or you are concerned about developing the condition after having breast augmentation within plants, call us today on 020 7993 4849 to schedule an in-person consultation at our Baker Street clinic. We have years of experience in treating women who may have been diagnosed with breast implant illness and have helped to improve symptoms and quality of life with breast implant removal surgery.