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The First Breast Implant, 1962

Updated on November 23, 2016
1957-Sophia Loren spies at Jayne Mansfield breasts- before implants existed.
1957-Sophia Loren spies at Jayne Mansfield breasts- before implants existed. | Source
Lindsey today
Lindsey today | Source
Lindsey in 1962
Lindsey in 1962 | Source
Silicone implants
Silicone implants | Source

Some women like Sophia Loren or Jayne Mansfield on the late 1950s didn't need them. That was a good thing, Marilyn Monroe didn't need them, either. It was a good thing theirs were natural gifts since breast implants were not around then

However, by the time 1962 arrived, so did the first silicone implant. That is when a young, poor, white woman, Timmie Lindsey became part of a medical study unknowingly. She was a high school drop out and a married teen having six kids in nine years by age 26. Her first husband was a flake so she left and started on with Fred Reyes. As they became intimate, Fred suggested to her to go get two roses, one on each breast, tatooed on. Timmie was poor, earning not more than $50 a week at electronics assembly plant. Thus, she was qualified, for charity medical help from Jefferson Medical, a training hospital for medical students. While the doctor told her the tattoos were no issue, he suggested a new experimental program to help women with low esteem and having small breasts. Timmie's breasts were small and sagging after six kids in rapid fire fashion, but she was more concerned with her large ears that her hair covered up. She agreed to the implants only if the doctor would also pin her ears back a little.

The first silicone implants were inserted. Ten days later, the bandages were removed and according to Timmie, the male doctors smiled with large smiles. When Timmie looked in the mirror, she liked the improvement. She had gone from a B to C cup. According to her, "When I had the implants put in, I would get wolf whistles when I walked down the street. I truly believe women should be free to choose. But, to be honest, there are times when I think I would like to have mine taken out".

By the 1970s, she began to experience some hardening of the silicone and minor pain, however, by the 1980s, this pain had increased much more. She suffered from rashes and dry mouth and shooting pain in the breast areas. By 1998, Dow Corning, the maker of the implants was facing hundreds of lawsuits over the silicone implants. Over 300,000 women had filed suits. Timmie's own daughter had an implant in the 1980s that ruptured. Timmie's sister in-law did also and it also ruptured killing her in the 1990s. Timmie's implants have now just started to tear at age 79.

Studies have come a long way. Today, while safer, there are 73 endocrine disruptors in many household products and cosmetics that can cause cancer in breasts. The older the women are when pregnant, the more likely the risk of breast cancer. Early puberty in girls at age 10 is also known to most likely cause breast cancer because of exposure to estrogen via menstrual cycles. Also BPA is to be avoided by girls. The problem is it in many things and cosmetics.

While some women may frown at using implants, for many, it is all about self esteem and how others see the woman.


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