Keeping abreast of implants

  • Posted

Posted 28/03/2012

Stephen Dorrall said on the BBC yesterday morning that he thought it was not in patients’ best interests to insist that when faulty PIP breast implants were taken out by the NHS a replacement was not inserted during the same procedure. His view was that it was exposing the patient to further surgery and that could not be justified as it was a poor decision on clinical grounds although he did suggest that the implant might be paid for by the patient.It is of course only purely cosmetic implants that face this situation since the NHS has said they will both remove and replace any implants that result from breast reconstruction surgery. Furthermore many women should be able to have the faulty implants replaced at the clinics where the original implant took place, but where that clinic refuses or is no longer in existence then the NHS will remove the faulty implant.Following Mr Dorrall’s comments however, a spokesman for the NHS pointed out that it might find it difficult to justify the time and expense in inserting new breast implants in these circumstances given the huge competition for time and resources from other patients with urgent needs.Trefine Maynard, a clinical negligence solicitor at Ashtons Legal, said: “We have a number of cases involving the PIP breast implant and are aware how much worry the dangers of these implants are causing to those who are waiting to have them removed. Stephen Dorrell has made a good point about the need for the NHS to put patients’ clinical best interests first but equally it does also underline the difficulty to trying to meet the many competing demands on the NHS services particularly in the current climate where resources are being pushed to their limits. It is interesting that Stephen Dorrell has also criticised the delay in responding to the first notification of the dangers of these faulty implants from the time the problem was first identified in early 2010 up until late 2011 when the issue was finally widely publicised. Sadly it is the experience of many of those who come to us that the NHS is similarly slow in responding to many of their patients’ conditions.”


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