Interpol issues arrest warrant for boss of faulty breast implant company
Interpol is seeking the arrest of the boss of the a French company PIP (Poly Implant Prothese) whose breast implants are at the centre of an international health scare.Jean-Claude Mas, 72, is wanted by Costa Rican authorities for crimes involving “life and health”, according to the international police agency’s website. Mr Mas was reportedly last seen in the Latin American country.
Interpol, which is based in France, issued a so-called red notice for Mr Mas, who ran Poly Implant Protheses (PIP), which is in liquidation.
France on Friday offered to pay for 30,000 women to have their PIP implants removed because of the risk the products could rupture and leak industrial-grade silicone.
But the Department of Health said it was not echoing the French advice as there was no evidence to support it. However they are reviewing the data and more information will be made this afternoon.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) pointed out that there was no evidence of any disproportionate rupture rates other than in France.
A spokesman said: “We therefore do not believe that the associated risks of surgery from breast implant removal can be justified without further evidence.
“We will continue liaising with the French medicines and medical devices regulator and we are awaiting the evidence to support the decision made in France. This will be evaluated as a matter of priority by our clinical and toxicological experts and we will issue further advice if necessary.
Tens of thousands of women in France, Britain, Italy, Spain, Portugal and other countries in Europe and South America have had implants made by PIP, which has now closed.
The implants are filled with an unapproved non-medical grade silicone believed to be made for mattresses and there have been reports that the protective barriers are faulty.
The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) took a different stance from the Government and said it considered the French advice “not unreasonable”.
BAAPS president Fazel Fatah said: “If women are concerned or experience adverse symptoms they should see their surgeon, to discuss options such as having a scan to determine whether there is any weakening or rupture. If there is, we reiterate our previous recommendations – to have both implants removed.”
Figures from the MHRA suggest 84,300 PIP implants have been sold in the UK since 2001.
Based on the assumption that each woman has two implants, at least 42,000 women in the UK could be affected, according to the regulator.
But the figure could be higher because women undergoing breast reconstructive surgery following cancer may only have had one implant.
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