Are you one of the 40,000 women in the UK affected by the French, PIP (Poly Implant Prothese), breast implant scandal?
If you’ve had breast augmentation or reconstruction using silicone implants and worry that you may be affected by the faulty French products, you should discuss this with your plastic surgeon or general practitioner.
Given the unknown consequences of these faulty implants nobody can tell you what will happen and whether you will have an opportunity to make claims for damages either physical or psychological in the future.
Advice your clinician may not give you, is to gather a dossier of evidence in case you need to take legal proceedings and one of the most important things you should do is have high quality photographs taken.
Why you should have photographs taken?
With the uncertainty of what future implications may occur it’s wise to ensure you have a clinical record of everything in case legal claims need to be made.
It’s important to have visual evidence of how your breasts look now, before the implants are removed or replaced or if you are just maintaining an observational strategy to provide a baseline for future reference.
If your implants have leaked there may already be visual changes to your breasts or surrounding areas and it is essential to document these differences by having independent accredited clinical photographs taken.
Without photographic records it is difficult to prove what has happened, for example tissue collapse or additional scarring caused by the removal.
Who should you trust to take these pictures?
At Medical Photographic Services we fully understand the sensitive nature of having intimate photographs taken and have many years of experience in this field, routinely working with anxious and nervous patients under the care of eminent plastic surgeons and dermatologists as well as providing medico-legal photographs for personal injury and negligence claims.
Before embarking on having any pictures taken you need to consider who you would be most likely to put you at ease and provide you with the confidence to have photographs taken?
As qualified members of the Institute of Medical Illustrators our primary concern at Medical Photographic Services is the welfare, privacy and comfort of the patient, ensuring their interests are paramount whilst providing anatomically correct pictures which are standardised and repeatable using nationally established guidelines.
Registered, professionally qualified, clinical photographers work to nationally approved clinical protocols and protect your interests, privacy and confidentiality with the respect they deserve, they are governed by the Institute’s strict Code of Conduct with regard to professional standards.
Theoretically, any High Street photographer can take the pictures and several legal companies claim to be experts, although unqualified, offering to take the pictures as part of their services and of course you can always take them yourself, but for the best results a registered clinical photographer should always be considered as the ‘gold standard’.
Using a registered clinical photographer provides you with peace of mind and assures you that the pictures taken will be handled in an appropriate way and only seen by healthcare professionals involved in your case, providing you with independent authenticated and accredited images that are under your control and admissible in law.
If you’re one of the affected women, you’ll have already undergone a surgical procedure at which time photographs were probably taken by the plastic surgeon concerned. If your operation was carried out in the private sector these photographs are the property of the surgeon or clinic and do not necessarily form part of your confidential medical record which means that you have no legal right of access to these pictures.
What to do now?
Unless your implants are actively leaking it is unlikely that you will have them removed urgently, so photography can be scheduled for your convenience.
Medical Photographic Services are planning to provide appointments for photography in locations near you.
If you wish to express an interest in having photographs taken please email for further details firstname.lastname@example.org