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German firm sold cheap boob silicone

The Local · 3 Jan 2012, 12:27

Published: 03 Jan 2012 12:27 GMT+01:00

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“We delivered the product to PIP and we are in contact with the French health authorities,” confirmed a spokesman for Brenntag, an industrial chemical distributor based in the Ruhr region of western Germany, to the Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper.

But the unnamed spokesman refused to discuss Brenntag’s business deals with PIP in any more detail.

The material is known as Baysilone and has many different uses, including as a sealant in the construction industry.

PIP faces thousands of lawsuits in France for implanting hundreds of thousands of women worldwide with industrial silicone, rather than more expensive medically-approved material. The cheaper implants allegedly tear more easily, and the leaked substance can cause a number of serious health problems.

Health authorities in Germany, France, Britain and Brazil have called on women treated in the PIP clinic to seek medical advice.

Despite the health warnings, PIP founder Jean-Claude Mas has defended the use of cheaper silicone and plans to continue producing them.

Brenntag, which describes itself as “the world’s leading chemical distribution company,” says the Baysilone is manufactured by US firm Momentive Performance Materials.

The US company emerged from GE Bayer Silicones, a joint company formed in 1998 by German chemical giant Bayer and US industrial company GE. Bayer sold its stake in GE in 2006.

Story continues below…

The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

13:01 January 3, 2012 by Shirazz
Industrial silicon, eh? I guess they think if it's good for plants, it must be good for implants...
13:43 January 3, 2012 by iseedaftpeople
another near-miss translation error by The Local.

Silicon is the chemical element which is famous for its use in electronics and semiconductors. Also known as SILIZIUM in German.

What's used for a boob job though is SILICONE -- Silikon in German.

But... mistakes happen.
14:03 January 3, 2012 by Dayzee
Who wrote this article? Is street slang the new "in" when reporting? I believe the correct term is breast and not "boob". If the local wants to be considered a professional news site, they should really be careful of these things.

And iseedaftpeople is right
15:38 January 3, 2012 by BR549
Construction sealant? Well, at least those BOOBS won't leak!

(BTW, I agree with Dayzee and iseedaftpeople)
17:51 January 3, 2012 by XFYRCHIEF
Perhaps the story should more correctly read "French BUY cheap silicone." The issue is did the French firm knowingly buy the cheap silicone? From the story and the comments of PIP founder Jean-Claude Mas it sounds like PIP intentionally purchased the product. While one might argue that the German firm should not have sold the silicone to the French firm, it is still PIP's responsibility.
18:58 January 3, 2012 by raandy
y XFYRCHIEF or maybe it should read " Don't squeeze to hard".
10:52 January 4, 2012 by storymann
The part of this failure that I am curious about is who tested these and gave approval prior to their use in a surgical procedure? When did they issue a health warning before or after the failures?


was there no prior testing or approval? if this is the case I would suggest that an equivalent org. like the FDA be required to do so in any future implants for public safety.
12:28 January 5, 2012 by zeddriver

I would go so far as to say that the German firm has zero responsibility in this. It's not a controlled substance. And anyone can buy it.

Unless of course. The investigation shows that they (the German supplier) knew of the end use for this stuff. That would change everything. But! That is just pure hypothetical thinking out loud on my part.
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