Faulty breast implants- PIP director given jail sentence
The boss of the French company PIP which made faulty breast implants has been given a four years jail sentence.Jean-Claude Mas, the founder of the PIP company, was also fined £63,000 (75,000 euros) by a court in Marseille. However, he will remain at liberty until a French court hears an appeal lodged by his lawyer.
PIP’s sale of faulty implants caused a global health scare which affected about 300,000 women in 65 countries.
The company was found to have used sub-standard silicone gel – rather than medical-grade silicone – which the result that many implants ruptured.
Apart from Mas, four other former PIP executives were convicted and given lesser sentences.
The health scare came to public attention in 2011 when the French government recommended that women have PIP implants removed due to an abnormally high rupture rate.
There was confusion as British health authorities said there was no need for routine removal. However, they later agreed to remove the implants to put women’s minds at rest.
The company’s head of quality control received two years, one of them suspended, and the head of research and development was sentenced to 18 months, suspended.
When an implant ruptures, the silicone gel filling can leak into the body. Some women will not notice anything at all, and there is no evidence of an increased cancer risk.
However, it can result in the formation of scar tissue that can change the shape and feel of the breast. The gel can be an irritant, causing pain and inflammation. It can also be more difficult to remove an implant once it has ruptured.
France’s Health Products Agency (ANSM) has to date registered more than 7,500 implant ruptures and 3,000 cases of undesirable effects, mainly inflammations, among the 30,000 women using PIP products in France.
In a report released in June, the ANSM said such incidents tended to be under-reported, and so “the number of women actually explanted may be greater than the number of cases reported to the agency”.
Tags: cosmetic surgery, Health Direct, health insurance, preventable crisis, private health