An outbreak of burst breast implants has led 935 Colombian women to file suit against the German firm that certified the faulty French-made prostheses.
The women join others from around the world who similarly want the German-based TUV Rheinland company to reimburse them for their burst boobs. The firm gave the okay for the distribution of defective implants made by the French company Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) which reportedly implanted 500,000 women around the world with potentially damaging breasts. Of those 500,000 women, supposedly 15,000 are Colombian. Though the implants were found not to cause cancer, they were made with industrial silicone rather than medical grade silicone and potentially can still cause tumors — the main reason they are banned in most countries.
“They feel that they have a time bomb in their body”, said Nathalie Lozano, director of the Colombian firm that represents the women.
The scandal broke in 2009 when surgeons reported high incidence of ruptures. By 2011, PIP was being liquidated.
“This generates constant stress and anxiety, and is the reason many opt to have them removed despite lacking money to replace them,” said Lozano.
Claudia Ximena Reyes, a resident of the Quidio department, had her PIP implants removed after the Colombian Ministry of Health expedited resolution 258 in 2012, under which the National Health System covers the removal of PIP implants.
“The supposed help from the government did not cover new implants, medical leave, pharmaceuticals or massages. Nothing. I was flat, like a child,” said Claudia.
“Since then, I don’t take of my bra in front of my husband. I feel mutilated.”
BACKGROUND: Colombia will pay for PIP breast implant removal