Six women who received breast implants linked to a rare form of cancer are suing Allergan for failing to warn the public about the health risks posed by these implants. According to a report on Northjersey.com, the lawsuits allege that Allergan downplayed the dangers associated with its Biocell brand textured breast implants after learning that it was linked to anaplastic large cell lymphoma, an immune system cancer that is commonly found in the scar tissue and fluid near an implant.
Did Allergan Hide Information?
About 80% of known cases of this type of cancer have been attributed to Allergan implants. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that Allergan products are six times more likely to lead to lymphoma compared to those manufactured by other companies. In July, Allergan recalled more than 30 styles of its breast implants and tissue expanders and has been hit with product liability lawsuits from patients in New Jersey, Florida and Massachusetts.
The women who filed the lawsuits in New Jersey live around the country and alleged in the complaints that Allergan failed to strengthen label warnings in spite of evidence pointing to a risk of developing cancer. According to the lawsuits, Allergan deliberately obstructed public knowledge by submitting a non-public annual status report to the FDA. Other reports were misleading, using manufacturer names such as “Santa Barbara” and “Costa Rice” instead of Allergan, the women alleged.
In one report Allergan even determined there was “no apparent adverse event” associated with its implants. In another report, it characterized lymphoma as “cancer, non-breast.” The women who have sued said they’ve either had their breast implants removed at a significant expense or are planning to do so. They have also said they’ve suffered pain and disfigurement and are now at increased risk of developing cancer. The women are seeking unspecified damages.
Protecting Your Rights
If you have received these or any other brand of macro-textured breast implants and are suffering from lymphoma, you may be able to file a product liability lawsuit against the medical device manufacturer. You may be able to seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost income, cost of surgery, rehabilitation, ongoing treatment, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced product defect lawyer will be able to advise you regarding your legal rights and options.