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“Why is Dow Corning giving money to women who have silicone breast implants?”
Dow Corning agreed to set up a multibillion dollar Trust Fund in 1992 to provide cash settlements for women implanted with Dow Corning breast implants in the mistaken belief that silicone implants might cause certain autoimmune diseases.
In response to multiple class action suits and 410,000 baseless claims that blamed silicone implants for triggering autoimmune diseases, the settlement was agreed to as a business decision by Dow Corning in bankruptcy proceedings. We now know that these claims were not substantiated by any of the credible scientific evidence that has been studied over the past 35 years.
Contrary to popular belief, the U. S. Food and Drug Administration never actually concluded that these implants were harmful and they even continued to allow use of the implants for cancer reconstruction while they were being studied. Recently, after their review of over 30 years of scientific studies showing no relationship between breast implants and autoimmune diseases and the assurance of safety by numerous unbiased prestigious scientific organizations, the FDA fully approved the sale and use of silicone breast implants for cosmetic and reconstructive purposes, formally, in 2006. Most other countries had already approved silicone breast implants years ago.
Initially, the Trust Fund awarded $2000 (“Expedited Settlement”) to women simply because they had Dow Corning Silicone breast implants. This offer expired in 2009. At this point, however, there still remains millions of dollars in the Dow Corning Trust Fund that was set up for women who have registered with the trust fund before 8/30/04 and can prove they have Dow Corning implants and now want them removed for any reason, even though we know the implants have not been shown to cause autoimmune diseases!
If you now wish to have your implants removed or replaced with saline implants, you must do so before June 1, 2014 to be eligible for a $5000 cash settlement when your implants are removed or replaced with saline implants. To be eligible you must 1) already be registered with the Dow Corning Settlement Trust, 2) have previously proven that you have Dow Corning implants or be able to prove that you had Dow Corning implants after they are removed, 3) have not accepted the $2000 Expedited Settlement offer before 6/1/09, and 4) and have not previously made a claim for explantation or replacement of your implants.
If you did not register with the Trust previously and wish to receive $5000 to have your implants removed, you are not eligible. You must have registered by 8/30/04 and offered proof that you have Dow Corning implants and then had them removed before 6/1/14. The criteria of “proof” is documented by the Dow Corning Trust Agreement and further clarification can be obtained by calling 1-866-875-6099 or by consulting the settlement website www.sfdct.com.
Surprisingly, patients do not need to offer any medical proof that her implants are actually causing any problems with disease to be eligible for this settlement.
Some patients who coincidentally have Dow Corning silicone implants and also at least one of the nine conditions or autoimmune diseases listed (see list at the settlement website or by calling 1-866-875-6099 may be eligible for a higher cash settlement and have until 2019 to offer proof and file claims.
Patient should keep in mind that none of these settlements and payments indicates that silicone implants caused any medical diseases and, furthermore, patients are not required to prove that they have been harmed by the implants to be eligible for the cash settlements.
The FDA has fully approved the sale and use of silicone breast implants for cosmetic and reconstructive purposes. There are well over two million satisfied patients in the USA who have had silicone breast implants for many years and silicone breast implants remain the most popular and trusted breast implants used throughout the world.
In general, silicone implants do not need to be removed or replaced unless they are causing some physical deformation of the breast such as scar contracture and firmness, or malposition.
If you feel your breast implants are causing a problem, you should consult with a knowledgeable physician.
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