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Breast Augmentation A Review Of Legal Issues

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Author: Dr. Jay Calvert


No single procedure in plastic surgery has been the subject of greater controversy and scrutiny, both scientific and political, than breast augmentation. More than 2.5 million American women, or about 1.5% of the adult female population, have breast implants. Breast augmentation is the second most commonly performed aesthetic surgical procedure in America, following liposuction. In 2004, more than 260 thousand women in America underwent breast augmentation procedures. The yearly number of performed breast augmentation procedures has exponentially grown, increasing more than 7 times between the years 1992 and 2005. Women between the ages of 20 and 35 years old are the largest consumers of cosmetic breast implants as they have shown to consume more than half of the breast implants available on the market.

Few surgical procedures have gained greater focus from the federal government than breast augmentation. Over the past few, the FDA hearings, with regards to the approval of silicone and saline filled breast implants, have attracted public attention. In 1976, the US government introduced the Federal Safe Devices Act, which empowered the FDA to regulate the approval of medical devices. As breast implants were developed before the year 1976, they were not subjected to formal FDA approval. Nonetheless, in the 80s of the last century, when a woman was discovered to have an immune disorder that was linked to her breast implant, the federal government started to question the safety of various breast implants.

Complications such as malignant tumors, immune mediated diseases, implant failure, and abnormal breast imaging findings evaluation has urged the FDA to ban the use of silicone implants in the USA. At this point, saline implants were available without any restriction, and were officially approved by the FDA in the year 2000. However, silicone gel-filled breast implants were approved to be used in clinical research involving reconstruction of the breast after tumor excision.

Failure of breast augmentation and its consequent complications are yielding hundreds of law suits each year. Although most of these law suits have been focused on more extensive complications that are associated with breast augmentation such as induction of fibrosis or eliciting of autoimmune disorders, a considerable proportion of law suits are initiated in response to aesthetic and cosmetic problems. Usually, the patient has high expectation of the procedure that sometimes isn't fulfilled by breast augmentation. Apparent scars, abnormally shaped breast implants and rupture of the implants are occasional causes of breast augmentation related law suits.

Dr. Jay Calvert is a plastic surgeon who specializes in cosmetic and aesthetic plastic procedures. He is an expert of breast augmentation techniques. Dr. Calvert will decide which breast augmentation surgical technique would be the best for each patient. He tries to choose the most convenient surgical procedure that would fit the condition of the patient, but yet fulfill how she wants to look like. Moreover, Dr. Calvert utilizes the endoscope to efficiently perform breast augmentation procedures. If you are thinking about having a breast augmentation procedure, don't hesitate to contact Dr. Calvert's medical office and schedule a consultation appointment and you'll sure never regret it.

About the author: Jay Calvert, MD, FACS is a board certified plastic surgeon based in Beverly Hills and Orange County, CA. He performs all types of plastic surgery and specializes in face lifts, rhinoplasty and breast augmentation. To learn more about Dr. Calvert's aesthetic surgery practice, please visit http://www.drcalvert.com or Call 1-310-777-8800 in Beverly Hills or 1-949-644-2858 in Newport Beach to set up an appointment.


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