Aim. To evaluate the incidence of Poly Implant Prosthése (PIP) rupture as assessed by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the prevalence of the detected signs and the potential correlation with breast carcinoma.
Patients and methods. 67 patients with silicone breast implants and clinical indications for breast MRI were evaluated for a total of 125 implants: 40 (32%) PIP in 21 patients and 85 non-PIP in 46 patients (68%), the latest considered as control group. A 1.5-T MR imaging device was used in order to assess implant integrity with dedicated sequences and in 6 cases a dynamic study was performed for characterizing breast lesions. Two radiologists with more than 5 years’ experience in the field of MRI evaluated in consensus all MR images searching for the presence of clear signs of intra or extra-capsular implant rupture.
Results. 20/40 (50%) PIP implants presented signs of intra-capsular rupture: linguine sign in 20 cases (100%), tear-drop sign in 6 (30%). In 12/20 cases (60%), MRI signs of extra-capsular rupture were detected. In the control group, an intra-capsular rupture was diagnosed in 12/85 cases (14%) associated with extra-capsular one in 5/12 cases (42%). Among the six cases with suspected breast lesions, in 2/21 patients with PIP implants (10%) a breast carcinoma was diagnosed (mucinous carcinoma, n=1; invasive ductal carcinoma, n=1). In 4/46 patients (9%) with non-PIP implants, an invasive ductal carcinoma was diagnosed.
Conclusion. The rupture rate of PIP breast implants is significantly higher than non-PIP (50% vs 14%). MRI represents the most accurate imaging tool for evaluating breast prostheses and the linguine sign is the most common MRI sign to be searched. The incidence of breast carcinoma does not significantly differ between the PIP and non-PIP implants and a direct correlation with breast cancer can not been demonstrated.