Dana Klassen has been living as a prisoner to her breast implants since she had them put in 18 years ago. She had them removed Jan. 30 photo: Contributed

Dana Klassen has been living as a prisoner to her breast implants since she had them put in 18 years ago. She had them removed Jan. 30 photo: Contributed

B.C. woman is a prisoner to her breast implants

Okanagan resident Dana Klassen has been experiencing breast implant illness for past 18 years

Dana Klassen has been a prisoner to her breast implants since they were put in 18 years ago.

The West Kelowna woman’s saline implants were placed April 10, 2001, the day she made the worst decision of her life.

“It’s been a nightmare, it is literally a toxic nightmare … I would have never gotten them if I would have known,” said Klassen.

Klassen says that her surgeon told her that the implants would last her lifetime and that she needn’t worry about any complications.

Since then she has experienced a long list of symptoms such as fatigue, joint pain, chest pain, brain fog, limb numbness and tingling, heart palpitations to name a few of roughly 30 symptoms she has experienced. Klassen, who has been an athlete her whole life and is on a soccer team and hockey team says that her legs have given out from underneath her before and she cannot drive because her arms are too weak now.

RELATED: B.C. YouTube sensation removes breast implants after years of illness

She also had her gallbladder removed three years ago in an attempt to find a cure but she only felt worse.

Klassen went to several doctors, has been in the ER at least 30 times last year and no doctors were able to give her an answer.

She began researching her symptoms and found out about breast implant illness, the condition she believes she has.

“I went on Google and it came up instantly and it’s like a light bulb went off, this is what has been making me sick these past years. I was an emotional wreck, I bawled my eyes out. I was so happy to have an answer,” said Klassen.

Three years after the discovery, Klassen had her implants removed by Dr. Aaron Brown on Jan. 30. She found him on a list at www.healingbreastimplantillness.com, a website that was first published in 2013 and since has more than 60,000 women in its support group on Facebook.

The website offers information and insight to women that have breast implant illness but does not provide medical advice, only studies, lists of doctors and information about breast implant illness for women to use. The list has been compiled by women all over the world recommending doctors that will perform the explant surgery and add notes like “listens to BII (breast implant illness)” because several women report in the Facebook groups that they feel the surgeons do not believe them and will not listen to their concerns.

After realizing what was wrong with her, Klassen dedicated herself to sharing her story to help other women and try to steer them away from making the same decision she did when she got her implants.

“I swore the one positive thing I would get out of this whole nightmare is bringing awareness to all women. Women with mastectomies are putting these toxic poisons back into their bodies. I don’t want to see any young women putting these toxins in their bodies either,” said Klassen.

RELATED: Kelowna oncologist changing the face of breast cancer treatment

Dr. Nick Carr is one of the doctors on Klassen’s list, however he does not advertise himself as an explant surgeon. He says he is a doctor who listens to the women who come into his office and if they ask for their implants to be removed he is happy to oblige.

“At the end of the day it’s pretty simple, the equation is, if your implants are bothering you and you don’t have evidence to prove its (symptoms) connected, you want them out, we will take them out and see what we can do,” said Dr. Carr.

There is no scientific evidence that have proven breast implant illness, however Dr. Carr says that even if removing breast implants has a placebo effect and women no longer experience symptoms, it is a positive experience for everyone involved.

“As a plastic surgeon I have an obligation to see these people and talk to them. When a client is dealing with this I think there is a likelihood that they really are experiencing these symptoms. You have to believe people, and there is a 50/50 chance they are going to get better when the implants come out,” said Dr. Carr.

She will be launching her own website about her experience in February, its launch will be announced on her Twitter @klassen_dana.

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@sydneyrmorton
sydney.morton@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(NEWS FILE PHOTO)
ACRD, City of Port Alberni receive $4 million for COVID-19

Municipalities have until end of 2021 to allocate funding

The site of the former Arrowview Hotel, on Second Avenue and Athol Street, as of Jan. 14, 2020. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Port Alberni pressures Arrowview Hotel owner for final cleanup

Demolition finished in June 2020 but site still full of construction material

West Coast General Hospital in Port Alberni received some good news about an expansion to its emergency department on Jan. 15, 2021. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
B.C. health ministry commits $6.25M to hospital expansion in Port Alberni

Plans for larger emergency department have been on hold since 2015

A Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation guardian took this photo of dozens of vehicles parked along a forest service road in the Kennedy watershed. (Submitted photo)
Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District looks at enforcement of illegal camping

ACRD currently does not have an existing bylaw service to tackle the issue

Randy Brown, owner of Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue, has five trailers and a motorhome at the back of his property that he is renting to people who had been previously homeless. He wants to put 15 trailers on his property, hooked up to city sewer and water and BC Hydro. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
Building owner digs in heels, refuses to remove illegal trailers from property

Port Alberni council gives owner two-week reprieve on remediation orders

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

A 17-year-old snowmobiler used his backcountry survival sense in preparation to spend the night on the mountain near 100 Mile House Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021 after getting lost. (South Cariboo Search and Rescue Facebook photo)
Teen praised for backcountry survival skills after getting lost in B.C.’s Cariboo mountains

“This young man did everything right after things went wrong.”

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa on December 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
No place for ‘far right’ in Conservative Party, Erin O’Toole says

O’Toole condemned the Capitol attack as ‘horrifying’ and sought to distance himself and the Tories from Trumpism

A passer by walks in High Park, in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. This workweek will kick off with what’s fabled to be the most depressing day of the year, during one of the darkest eras in recent history. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
‘Blue Monday’ getting you down? Exercise may be the cure, say experts

Many jurisdictions are tightening restrictions to curb soaring COVID-19 case counts

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19: Provinces work on revised plans as Pfizer-BioNTech shipments to slow down

Anita Anand said she understands and shares Canadians’ concerns about the drug company’s decision

Tourists take photographs outside the British Columbia Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday August 26, 2011. A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging the provincial government to not pursue plans to ban domestic travel to fight the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. travel ban will harm struggling tourism sector, says industry coalition

B.C. government would have to show evidence a travel ban is necessary

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

Everett Bumstead (centre) and his crew share a picture from a tree planting location in Sayward on Vancouver Island from when they were filming for ‘One Million Trees’ last year. Photo courtesy, Everett Bumstead.
The tree-planting life on Vancouver Island featured in new documentary

Everett Bumstead brings forth the technicalities, psychology and politics of the tree planting industry in his movie

Most Read