Tens of thousands of women have been advised to contact their plastic surgeon following fears over a make of breast implants. Industry regulators warned that the make of implant had been found to contain an unauthorised silicone gel.
It is thought that up to 40,000 women in Britain could have the implant, made by the French company Poly Implant Prothese (PIP).
Plastic surgeons have also been warned not to use the implant.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said that there was no evidence as yet that they could harm patients.
However, both the MHRA and the French medical device regulatory authority, AFSSAPS, are investigating the situation.
Dr Susanne Ludgate, from the MHRA, said: “Clinicians should not implant these devices and they should quarantine any stock.
“Patients who have concerns about their PIP silicone gel filled breast implants should contact their breast implant surgeon.
“Once we receive further information about the safety of these products, we will provide further advice on patient management, as necessary, when more information is available.”
Almost 8,500 breast enlargement operations were performed in Britain last year, figures from the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons shows.
Nigel Mercer, consultant plastic surgeon and BAAPS President, said: “Concerned patients should contact their surgeon to find out what implants they have.
“Only PIP implants are involved and as yet there is no evidence that the gel they contained is harmful and we understand that it will not leak into the body. ”