Some breast implants can cause damage to a developing fetus

Small-sized molecules identified as endocrine disrupting chemicals can be part of some breast implants and are capable of affecting developing neurons in vitro at extremely low concentrations

A report published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine in 2013 revealed that some breast implants do in fact pose health threats, and can cause damage to a developing fetus. Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson © image left: silicone breast implant, right: saline breast implant.

Chemical composition of some breast implants and concerns

The PIP scandal: an analysis of the process of quality control that failed to safeguard women from the health risks, The Royal Society of Medicine, doi: 10.1177/0141076813480994, May 2013.

… “ The significant component of breast implants is silicone (polydimethylsiloxane), not to be confused with the chemical element silicon. Although silicone does contain silicon, the former does not occur in nature and is entirely synthetic. Due to the production method, commercial silicone products will contain variable concentrations of molecular weights and sizes including a subgroup of small-sized molecules referred to as D4, D5, D6.

D4 (octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane) was identified as an endocrine disrupting chemical (EDC) of ‘high concern’ in 2007 by a report commissioned by the European Commission entitled ‘Study on enhancing the Endocrine Disrupter priority list with a focus on low-production chemicals’. The effects of low doses of such chemicals, particularly on the developing fetus, have been well documented. While most regulatory levels of impurities in breast implants are considered acceptable in the range of a few parts per million, studies have showed that EDCs are capable of affecting developing neurons in vitro at concentrations of less than one part per trillion.

In addition, the normal manufacturing process may result in traces of platinum, used as an essential catalyst. Small traces of platinum may be an acceptable find in medical grade silicone, unlike heavy metals such as tin, zinc, chromium, arsenic, lead, antimony, nickel or copper. In addition to specific health concerns associated with these heavy metals, there is also the risk that they may induce platinum toxicity. ” …

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