PIP Breast Implants
I underwent Breast Augmentation (BA) in April 2006 at the Birkdale Clinic in Crosby Liverpool, my aftercare was provided at their clinic in Rotherham. Two weeks ago I heard about these faulty PIP implants which before being withdrawn had been made in France. I had heard on the news that the French government were going to allow any French women who had received these implants, to have them removed and replaced, there was a danger of these implant rupturing and the had been filled with a low grade silicon which actually has been used in the construction industry.
I must have been delusional or naive because I believed the UK would follow and allow what the French were doing and by now many other countries to care for these women, to recognise the risks to the health and wellbeing of women in the UK with these implants, estimated to be between 40,000-50,000. How wrong I was, the government insisted that unless the women with PIP had them done under a NHS procedure there would be no help, the private clinics must do these. Later the NHS did say that if any private clinics were not going to remove the implants for free of charge they would but would not replace them. I would have thought here that after discussion with the women that while they opened them to remove the implants how much extra work would it take if the women were able to pay just for new implants to have these inserted. Let us not forget the NHS and these private clinics may well be causing these women a high level of emotional distress.
As I mentioned earlier I had mine done at the Birkdale Clinic in Liverpool at the time of my surgery the Clinic and the surgeon were known to have used PIP implants. I managed to get through on the phone and gave them my details and that I wanted to know if mine were PIP, because I didn’t have any paperwork informing me what they were. I was told they would get back to me within two weeks, so after a few more calls and emails I decided to have a look at the DVD of my surgery, it had been filmed for a programme on the Discovery Health Channel, I could see the tray with the implants but I couldn’t make the name out.
On January 6th I was a guest on the Toby Foster at Breakfast programme on BBC Radio Sheffield to talk about the fears myself and thousands of other women were suffering trying to find if we had PIP implants, also many had found the did have PIP and were being quoted disgusting price to have them replaced, some women would be charged £60 for a copy of their records and even more for a reassuring scan. Later that day Rotherham MP Denis MacShane was on Radio Sheffield talking about these implants and two women he was representing in trying to get them information from the Birkdale Clinic. Radio Sheffield passed my details to Mr MacShane and his office phoned me later that day and if I didn’t get any satisfaction from the Birkdale Clinic I had to let them know.
Birkdale are not the only private clinic who is treating women with PIP implants or just trying to find out if we have them in this way. I also have had contact with several other women around the country who are being treated in the same way as me by Birkdale. As recent as January 17th I phoned the Liverpool clinic again, this time I was told my records would be at the Rotherham Clinic, so they put me through. I spoke with someone for around ten minutes, gave her all the details again and she told me she would phone me back on my mobile hopefully that afternoon, I’m still waiting and my health is starting to be affected through the worry of not knowing and I’m usually a very positive person. I need along with thousands of other women to know now, especially as I had a breast cancer scare in 2010 and a benign cyst was removed in January 2011,
Here are a few quotes from my conversations with some other women I’ve had contact with:
“Hi Carol .yes mine are pip implants, I’ve found the paper work, I had mine in Dec 2007, Im waiting to hear from them ,they are not too quick at that though. I kept my card safe, because I had pain weeks after surgery and went back twice, they said it could be nerve endings repairing. I still have the same pain to this day. but I’ve got used to it I guess, I’m very worried what to do… do you think they will replace them?”
“Hi Carol how you getting on? Have you found out any news from Birkdale yet? I’m still waiting……. I think I’m going to book in for a MRI scan in the meantime. I hear in the States they recommend having one every 3yrs with silicone implants anyway as it’s the only way to show up a rupture, it’s a shame were not advised so well here!!”
“Thanks Carol just read the extra bits now. It’s been two weeks since I first contacted them they also stating a £60 charge to discuss options with a surgeon!! This is vile practice they are making money out of all of this, it’s so unfair! So were at £110 before we even had a scan…….it’s awful”
This is the page that Birkdale put on their website about PIP implants, this was after they removed the thread I had started on their Facebook page which had received lots of comments from very worried women
© Carol Robson 2012
This article can also be read in Verita Magazine under the title; PIP IMPLANTS – THE STORY SO FAR (EXCLUSIVE) BY CAROL ROBSON