Lack of appropriate imaging before breast augmentation can have serious patient consequences

Kathy L Flitcroft, Andrew J Spillane and Rebecca L Read
Med J Aust 2014; 200 (4): . || doi: 10.5694/mja13.11217
Published online: 3 March 2014

Advice on preoperative imaging for different groups of women is now available

Breast augmentation has become increasingly popular in recent years, with 316 848 procedures reported in the United States in 2011.1 While there is a lack of accessible data about breast augmentation procedures in Australia, the breast surgical oncology community has ongoing concerns about the potential for breast implants to deter women from participating in appropriate symptom assessment or routine screening and to impair early detection of breast cancer.2

  • Breast and Surgical Oncology at The Poche Centre, Sydney, NSW.


Kathy Flitcroft’s research position is part-funded by the Friends of the Mater Foundation (FOTM), Rebecca Read’s training position is funded by FOTM and the Melanoma Institute Australia, and Andrew Spillane’s academic position is funded by FOTM.

Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.

  • 1. American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. 50 years of silicone gel breast implants. (accessed Nov 2013).
  • 2. Breast Surgeons of Australia and New Zealand. Position statement: breast augmentation and reduction mammoplasty procedures. (accessed Feb 2014).
  • 3. Handel N. The effect of silicone implants on the diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of breast cancer. Plast Reconstr Surg 2007; 120 (7 Suppl 1): 81S-93S.
  • 4. Lavigne E, Holowaty EJ, Pan SY, et al. Breast cancer detection and survival among women with cosmetic breast implants: systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies. BMJ 2013; 346: f2399.
  • 5. Stöblen F, Rezai M, Kümmel S. Imaging in patients with breast implants – results of the First International Breast (Implant) Conference 2009. Insights Imaging 2010; 1: 93-97.


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