Anaplastic large cell lymphoma, or ALCL, is a rare form of lymphoma. This highly treatable cancer is linked to specific Allergen textured shell implants, which are now recalled and are no longer available. These implants are associated with a particular diagnosis, breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma, or BIA-ALCL.
How is ALCL diagnosed?
The first step in diagnosing ALCL starts with identifying the symptoms. These symptoms include:
- Enlargement of the breasts
- Breast pain
- Lump, or lumps, within the breast or the armpit
- Asymmetry of the breasts
- Breasts feeling firmer than usual or hard
- Skin rashes or irritation
When symptoms associated with BIA-ALCL are present you will then undergo a physical examination and testing. These symptoms can be associated with another issue and may not indicate BIA-ALCL. Testing may include an ultrasound or MRI. If lumps or fluid are identified around the implant or within the lymph nodes, fluid will be extracted from around the breast to test for the presence of BIA-ALCL.