Objective.

To examine the occurrence of esophageal disorders, connective tissue diseases, and congenital malformations in children of mothers with breast implants.

Methods.

Nationwide register-based follow-up study of all offspring born during 1977 to 1992 to a cohort of 1135 women with breast implants for cosmetic reasons and to a comparison cohort of 7071 women who underwent breast reduction surgery. Cause-specific hospi-talization rates among offspring, relative to those of the general population, were calculated from the Danish National Registry of Patients.

Results.

Among the 939 children of mothers with breast implants, higher rates of esophageal disorders were observed, but the excess was similar for those born before versus after the implant surgery. Higher than expected hospitalization rates for these conditions were also observed among 3906 children of women who underwent breast reduction surgery. No significant increases in connective tissue diseases or congenital malformations were observed in either the breast implant or breast reduction cohorts.

Conclusions.

This first epidemiologic cohort study provides no evidence that silicone breast implants affect risks of esophageal or other disorders in children of the implantees. Rather, the observed risk pattern suggests that a lower threshold exists among both groups of women who have undergone cosmetic breast surgery in seeking professional medical care for problems normally solved outside the hospital.

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