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Breast augmentation is the most common cosmetic surgery done. The implants are a breast shaped bag made of a silicone membrane filled with silicone gel. Implants can also be used as part of recreating a breast shape after surgery for breast cancer.

There are many different makes of implants. Sometimes they need to be replaced after 10 to 20 years. Modern designs of silicone implants have a thicker outer shell of silicone rubber and also thickened gel, so they are not likely to leak.

Some women worry that the silicone could cause breast cancer due to a report several years back. But there is no evidence that silicone increases the risk of breast cancer.

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Women with cosmetic breast implants are at no greater risk of getting breast cancer. In a pooled long-term follow-up study of almost four decades, involving 3,486 Swedish and 2,736 Danish women who underwent cosmetic breast implantation between 1965 and 1993, cancer incidence through 2002 was ascertained through nationwide cancer registries and no association was found with increased breast cancer incidence.

The risk of breast cancer does not appear to be from a single source. Even women who do not have breast augmentation can be susceptible to breast cancer.

If you’re considering breast implants, it is important to discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor and together decide what is best for you.