Blood cancers

More women diagnosed with breast implant associated ALCL


The TGA has confirmed additional cases of breast implant associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) with a total of 56 cases identified in Australia since 2007.

As previously reported in the limbic, the number of women affected will increase given the pattern of use of textured implants in recent years. Most cases of lymphoma occur between three and 14 years after insertion of the implants.

Experts have also suggested many indolent cases of BIA-ALCL have gone unrecognised.

The TGA Alert highlighted the likely role of bacterial biofilm in the development of BIA-ALCL and the need for scrupulous infection control.

“Therefore, standard-of-care precautions, such as antibiotic prophylaxis, pocket irrigation, sterility, and skin preparation should be maintained when placing an implant. It is also hypothesised that such precautions would have the additional benefit of reducing the risk of contracture,” the TGA said.

The Alert also reiterated the main method of investigation of suspected cases is ultrasound followed by fine needle aspiration. PET/CT and MRI are reserved for confirmed cases.

There does not appear to be a role for mammography.

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