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Allergan Breast Implant Lawsuits

A recall has been issued for Allergan Biocell textured breast implants as of July 2019, by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This came after discovering a link between the product and a significantly higher risk of a certain type of cancer, called breast implant associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL). If you or a loved one has developed cancer after receiving Allergan breast implants, contact Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo, P.C. We are currently reviewing and accepting cases on behalf of victims throughout New York. Schedule a free consultation today to discuss your legal option for obtaining compensation. Call (212) 732-9000 or fill out our request form online

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  • Over the past decade we have obtained more than $2 billion in compensation on behalf of clients.
  • We have successfully handled a wide range of product liability lawsuits and know what it takes to win your case.
  • We are a full-service firm, providing dedicated and individualized care to each and every injured client.

The Link between Allergan Breast Implants and Cancer

Thirty-eight countries have recalled Allergan breast implants due to their link to BIA-ALCL. According to the FDA, 573 women have been diagnosed with the implant-related disease and 33 women have lost their lives as a result. Out of those cases, 481 cases have been associated with Allergan implant, as well as 13 of the 33 deaths. 

A study published online in January 2018 by JAMA Oncology, quantified the risk of women with breast implants developing BIA-ALCL. 

  • 1 in 35,000 for women age 50
  • 1 in 12,000 at age 70
  • 1 in 7,000 at age 75

The FDA estimates that women with Allergan Biocell textured implants are six times more likely to be diagnosed with BIA-ALCL than with textured implants from other manufacturers. 

A recall was issued by the FDA on July 24, 2019, requesting Allergan to voluntarily recall its Biocell textured breast implants and tissue expanders. The major manufacturer of breast implants agreed and is removing the products from the marketplace.  

The first case of ALCL related to saline and silicone breast implants was reported by the FDA in January 2011.  

Filing a BIA-ALCL Lawsuit

Lawsuits against Allergan being filed by victims of their defective implant products are on the rise. Legal action is being taken based on claims of:

  • Inherently defective product design;
  • Failure to warn physicians and patients of dangers; and/or
  • Failure to thoroughly conduct product testing.

At this time there are several class action lawsuits involving textured breast implants. When pursuing compensation, BIA-ALCL victims are able to seek damages for medical costs associated with treatment and the initial implantation of the breast implants, wages lost due to illness, and noneconomic damages, such as pain, suffering, and emotional trauma.

Why You Need a Lawyer

Suing billion dollar corporations like a breast implant manufacturer, who has an army of lawyers, takes an enormous amount of resources and preparation. You as the plaintiff, has the burden of proof. This means you must provide a documented history of your illness and any related records in order to prove your case. That will involve collecting medical records, bills, and any other documents which evidently show losses. A complaint and other standard court documents will need to be filed before their deadlines. This all may be too overwhelming to handle for someone who is suffering from or being treated for BIA-ALCL. An attorney can and will handle every task related to your case so that you do not have to carry the additional stress. 

Becoming part of a class-action lawsuit may also be an option. Unlike individual cases, class-action lawsuits are brought by one or a few people on behalf of a larger group of plaintiffs who have a similar claim against one or a number of defendants. This type of lawsuit is especially complicated, and there is a much higher chance of winning when an experienced attorney is advocating for the group. When a settlement or verdict is reached, any awarded compensation will be divided up amongst the group. 

What is Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL)?

BIA-ALCL is a rare type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that infects lymphocyte cells, a key part of the body’s immune system. The symptoms of BIA-ALCL are similar to those of breast cancer as lymphoma cells spread in the scar tissue and fluids surrounding the breast implant. Women may exhibit:

  • Redness
  • Swelling near implants
  • Pain and tenderness
  • Hard lumps in the breast tissue  
  • Fatigue 
  • Changes in size and shape of breasts

It can take anywhere up to 10 years for symptoms to appear. Once diagnosed, the disease can be treated by removing the breast implants and the scar tissue or capsule surrounding it. Some patients may require radiation and/or chemotherapy depending on how advanced the cancer is.

How is BIA-ALCL Diagnosed?

This form of cancer can be diagnosed when visiting your doctor for an exam. If you report any symptoms or if there are visual signs, your doctor may perform a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or ultrasound of the implant to discern if there is fluid buildup or a mass. If fluid buildup or a mass is evident, the physician will then conduct a biopsy to test the fluid for a substance called CD30. This substance is a protein in cell membranes that shows up abnormally in cases of BIA-ALCL. If the fluid tests positive for CD30, then you will receive a diagnosis of ALCL and will be able to discuss treatment options.

I Have Allergan Breast Implants, Do I Need to Remove Them?

If you are not exhibiting any symptoms of BIA-ALCL, then the FDA recommends keeping the implants, as the surgery is not worth the risk and the possibility of contracting lymphoma is low. However, there is still the possibility of being diagnosed with BIA-ALCL years after the implants have been placed. Due to the seriousness of this disease, immediately see a healthcare provider if you show being to see any related signs.  

Women who have been diagnosed with BIA-ALCL can speak to their health insurance company to verify that they will cover the cost of removal. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons has advocated for insurance companies paying for removal costs and treatments associated with BIA-ALCL. 

Recalled Allergan Products

The following Allergan products have been recalled by the FDA:

  • Natrelle saline breast implant styles 168, 363, 468
  • Natrelle and McGhan 410 breast implant styles LL, LM, LF, LX, ML, MM, MF, MX, FL, FM, FF, FX
  • Natrelle and McGhan 410 Soft Touch breast implant styles LL, LM, LF, LX, ML, MM, MF, MX, FL, FM, FF, FX
  • Natrelle 510 Dual-Gel styles LX, MX, FX
  • Natrelle Inspira breast implants, styles TRL, TRLP, TRM, TRF, TRX, TSL, TSLP, TSM, TSF, TSX, TCL, TCLP, TCM, TCF, TCX
  • Natrelle and McGhan Round Gel Implants, styles 110, 110 Soft Touch, 120, 120 Soft Touch
  • Natrelle Komuro breast implants styles KML, KMM, KLL, and KLM
  • Natrelle Ritz Princess breast implant styles RML, RMM, RFL, RFM
  • Natrelle 150 Full Height and Short Height double lumen implants
  • Natrelle 133 tissue expanders with and without suture tabs: styles 133FV, 133MV, 133LV, 133MX, 133SX, 133SV, T-133FV, T-133MV, T-133LV, T-133MX, T-133SX, T-133SV, 133FV-T, 133MV-T, 133LV-T, 133MX-T, 133SX-T, 133SV-T
  • Natrelle 133 Plus tissue expander styles 133P-FV, 133P-MV, 133P-LV, 133P-MX, 133P-SX, 133P-SV, T-133P-FV, T-133P-MV, T-133P-LV, T-133P-MX, T-133P-SX, T-133P-SV, 133P-FV-T, 133P-MV-T, 133P-LV-T, 133P-MX-T, 133P-SX-T, 133P-SV-T

The products unaffected by the recall include Allergan’s Natrelle smooth and Microcell breast implants and tissue expanders.

We Will Advocate for You

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with BIA-ALCL after undergoing a breast augmentation surgery with Allergan Biocell textured breast implants, contact Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo, P.C. Speak to our Allergan breast implant cancer lawyer regarding your options for obtaining compensation. Victims only have a limited amount of time to file individually or join a class action lawsuit, call (212) 732-9000 and schedule a free consultation today.