England

Cheshire woman's fear over her PIP implants rupturing

Joanna Van Rooyen
Image caption Joanna Van Rooyen saved for six years to pay for her procedure

"I am terrified of going under the knife again," said a Cheshire woman who fears her PIP breast implants at the centre of a health scare have ruptured.

"Being operated on is the last thing I want to do but I'm going to have to do it because I want to know I am safe from the risk of ruptures."

Joanna Van Rooyen, 28, from Middlewich had breast implants done at Surgicare in Northenden, Manchester, in 2007.

She said she had had to have corrective surgery after the procedure.

"I had an allergic reaction to the stitches they used. It has really put me off being operated on again."

The mother-of-two said it had taken her more than six years to save up more than £5,000 for breast implants.

Mrs Van Rooyen said: "It was a big decision but I thought long and hard about it.

'Best on the market'

"I only wanted modest, natural looking implants - just a size up - to make me firmer and less self conscious after I had my children."

She said: "The surgeon told me the silicone implants he was going to use were the best on the market and they had a lifetime guarantee from rupturing.

"He said they would never need replacing and I took his word for it."

A few months ago she said she had been admitted to hospital.

"I had swollen lymph nodes and doctors couldn't explain it. They gave me antibiotics.

"I'm not saying it is caused by the implants but it could well be related. Then about a month ago I found out about the concerns over PIP implants on Facebook."

The beauty student contacted Surgicare Medical Group on 13 January to find out if that is what was used. Three days later the company confirmed she had PIP implants.

"It is really frightening. I have the symptoms for rupturing - they are very painful and very tender and rippling. Woman's fear over PIP implants

"I am worried about my health but also how I will afford to pay to have them replaced."

'Worse than before'

Surgicare declined to comment. According to the company's website it will remove implants free of charge, but it is charging between £2,500 and £3,000 to replace implants.

"I can't just have them removed as this will leave a big hole and it will be even worse than before I had the surgery done and then there is the risk of infection.

"Besides, I paid a lot of money to have the procedure done so they should replace them. It is wrong and I really feel Surgicare is fobbing me off."

Mrs Van Rooyen said: "If I could go back I would never have had it done."

And she warned others to think carefully before having implants.

"I would try and persuade people not to have it done and tell them to be happy with what you've got."

Women with PIP breast implants held a protest outside Surgicare's clinic in Northenden, Manchester, on Saturday.

They want the clinics to pay to remove and replace the implants.

Products produced by French firm Poly Implant Prothese, which manufactured the implants, were banned in 2010.

They contain industrial silicone which is not meant to be inside human bodies and have a higher risk of rupturing.

The NHS estimate 40,000 women in the UK have had PIP implants.

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