Motivational speaker Mel Robbins recently floored her followers when she shared that she's had breast implants for a few years now. But her surprising story didn't end there.
On Friday, the self-help book author, 52, told her fans via Instagram video that she opted for breast augmentation surgery four to five years ago because she was unhappy with her appearance post-kids.
"After breastfeeding three kids, my boobs looked like a pair of gym socks filled with sand," Robbins joked in the video caption. She's mom to son Oakley and daughters Kendall and Sawyer.
But once she got the implants, Robbins started to notice a numbness in her right arm, she said in the caption, so she started looking into having them removed. During this process, Robbins learned her particular implant model had been recalled, and to her surprise, her doctor hadn't contacted her to tell her.
"Like anyone who gets surprising medical news, I googled it and learned my (Allergan) biocell textured implants were recalled due to cases of lymphoma," she explained in the caption.
In July 2019, Allergan issued a worldwide recall of its textured implants. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration called on the company to do so after it found a higher risk of breast implant associated-anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) linked to such devices. As of August 2020, there were 733 cases of BIA-ALCL reported to the FDA, including 36 deaths, according to FDA data.
"The old Mel would have spent 24 hours hyperventilating on WebMD, sending frantic messages and articles to my friends," Robbins continued in the caption. "But I didn't allow myself to do that this time, and there’s a simple reason why: Worrying about something you can’t control is a terrific way to torture yourself.
"Life is about decisions. ... Are you going to let your worries consume you, or are you going to fight back and take control of your mind? I know my decision. I’m taking control of my mind. The implants are already in me, so there's zero reason to beat myself up over it. There’s zero benefit to feeling regret or guilt or shame."
Robbins went on to share that she's scheduled a surgery in six weeks with one of the world’s leading experts on breast implants. "If I get negative news, I’ll deal with it then. And, whatever happens, I won’t go through it alone," she concluded.
For years, research has indicated that certain types of breast implants may lead to a rare type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. In March 2019, the FDA held a hearing on breast implant safety, where multiple women spoke about the health problems they believed they experienced due to their texture breast implants. At the time, the FDA stopped short of banning them.
When Allergan did recall its textured implants a few months later, the FDA said that the risk of developing BIA-ALCL with an Allergan textured implant was about six times that of other manufacturers available in the U.S. The risk of developing BIA-ALCL with any textured implant ranges from 1 in 3,817 to 1 in 30,000, TODAY previously reported.
Some doctors believe the suede-like surface of textured implants can interact with the human body, which can play a role in developing the rare cancer.
“The textured surface is almost like a tiny Velcro," Dr. Elisabeth Potter, a plastic surgeon specializing in breast reconstruction in Austin, Texas, previously told TODAY. "It grows into the woman's body. I believe that that's the source of the breast implant-associated lymphoma because there's an interaction between the woman's body and the implant."
If you have textured breast implants but no symptoms, the FDA does not recommend removing them because the risk of developing BIA-ALCL is low. But you should also know the symptoms of BIA-ALCL, primarily persistent swelling or pain near the breast implant. Monitor the area around your implants for changes, and contact your health care provider if you notice any or experience symptoms.