I Have Breast Implants. They Need To Go.
Today I’m sharing with the world something that I’ve tried to hide for 15 years. I have breast implants.
Tomorrow I am having surgery to remove them.
When I first decided to get these things out of my body, I was ecstatic. I know they are affecting my health, and I don’t like them. Sometimes they hurt. It’s not painful, but uncomfortable, especially if I’m bending down to pick something up from the floor or laying on my side to go to sleep. I’ve never really liked them. They’ve never felt like part of me, and I’ve always been way too worried that people could tell that I have them. I don’t hug people tightly, I rarely wear tight or low-cut shirts, and I certainly have never talked about them publicly until now. I really can’t wait to get them out.
As the surgery has gotten closer, I’ve gotten more and more nervous. This started last week. I know I’m stressed because my skin has been broken out, much more than usual.
Here are some of the things that are on my mind:
- I’m worried about all the medications that I’m going to have to take. There’s antibiotics, painkillers, anti-nausea medication. And then there’s anesthesia. I’ve avoided all of these things for the last three years. At least now my health is much improved and my body is better able to detoxify these drugs.
- Surgery is scary, even if it’s a simple one like this. They’re going to open up my previous incision, which is underneath the breast. They remove the implant and the capsule around it. The implant isn’t supposed to be there, so my body built a capsule around it to protect me. Isn’t the body great?! They’ll clean up in there, stitch my muscle back to wherever it attaches, and close me up. My incisions will probably be a little longer than before, but that doesn’t concern me. I think the surgery will go fine, but there is always a chance that there can be complications.
- With diabetes, not eating after midnight can be tricky. If my blood sugar goes low overnight, I’ll have to eat something to bring it up, but I’m not supposed to eat! I’ll probably be so worried about going low that the stress will make it go high. Neither is good, especially if I’m hoping that my body will be in tip-top shape for surgery and healing. I’m waiting to hear back from the anesthesiologist to find out what I should choose to eat should my blood sugar drop overnight.
- I’m a little concerned with how I will look afterwards. The doctor wasn’t worried about it, but I’m worried about loose skin and whether it will tighten back up. Women go through this all the time with pregnancy, so I keep telling myself it’s no big deal. I feel so shallow worrying about something like this!
- I’m losing a part of myself. As much as I don’t like these boobs and I say they don’t feel like part of me, this is what I’ve had for 15 years. If boobs came into my life around 11 or 12 years old, I’ve had these boobs longer than I ever had my own smaller boobs. These boobs are me; this is my identity. It’s weird that it will just change so quickly overnight. I want it to change, but it’s kinda freaking me out at the same time.
- I’m worried that my health won’t improve when the implants come out. I really want it to help, and I’m scared that I’m going to be disappointed. My health is the number one reason I’m getting these things out, and I’m just a little too hopeful for comfort.
So, why did I get implants in the first place, and why am I getting rid of them?
When I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2001, I lost a lot of weight. I got really skinny, which is typical. Of course my boobs got a lot smaller, and my bras and my clothes didn’t fit right anymore. That bothered me more than it should, and I decided to get implants. The decision still surprises me. I told my family and one friend at my engineering job. I have tried to hide it from everyone else for the past 15 years.
I am getting rid of them because they hurt, they make me feel like a phony, and mainly because they can have some serious health consequences. Up until this past year, I never considered that they could have contributed to my autoimmune disease. I was diagnosed with diabetes a year before I got them, so in my mind, I was already sick and they didn’t cause that. However, when I really thought about it, I realized that I only had one autoimmune disease before the surgery. Lots of people get diabetes and don’t go on to get any further autoimmune diagnoses. It was just one year after my implant surgery that I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and Hashimoto’s thyroid disease. Coincidence?
I have done quite a bit of research online, and breast implants have caused a lot of problems for a lot of women, and that’s not just the silicone implants. My implants are saline, which I thought was completely safe. They’re not, though. When you get breast implants, you are putting a foreign body inside of your body, for a long time. How can that be a good idea? I bought the book by Dr. Susan Kolb, “The Naked Truth About Breast Implants.” She’s an expert on breast implant illness and has even been through it herself.
Here are some of the issues with saline implants:
- Women expect their implants to last for a lifetime. They don’t though, and many doctors believe they should be replaced every 10 years.
- Capsular contracture can happen when the capsule that the body builds around the implant gets too thick and too hard. The doctor thinks this is why I have discomfort, although mine isn’t a severe case.
- Putting a foreign object in your body causes an immune response and inflammation in your body.
- The shell of saline implants is made of silicone. Some people produce antibodies to silicone that cause a constant immune reaction and can lead to autoimmune disease. This can be a problem for people with smooth implants, but an even bigger problem with textured implants. Thankfully, mine are not textured.
- The valves on saline implants can malfunction and cause leaks. If the leak causes the implant to empty, the woman will go in to the doctor and get the implant replaced. If the leak causes a very slow release of saline, the woman doesn’t know there’s a problem and takes no action. Mold can grow around the implant and inside the implant, causing some major health problems.
There are 21 pages listed in the book’s index under “Autoimmune Disease.” There is a connection between breast implants and autoimmune symptoms.
Here is a video of Dr. Kolb talking about saline implants and health problems.
Here another video; this one’s about silicone implants.
Well, I’ve got a lot to do before tomorrow. I’m doing a lot of food prep, because I know I won’t want to cook for a couple of days, and I don’t want to rely on my husband and kids trying to make my food. I’m much more comfortable having it all ready to heat up and eat.
I’ll let you know how the surgery goes and take note of any changes that I feel afterwards. Stay tuned! Hopefully I’ll have positive changes to share. Either way, I’ll give you an update.
Please feel free to share this. Information on breast implant sickness isn’t well known (especially for saline implants), but it needs to be. I faced my fear and told the internet that I have breast implants, in hopes that I might help someone else. Please share so that I didn’t do this for nothing! Thank you!
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