Mum's gruesome discovery after years of mysterious symptoms: 'I just gave up'

A mum of two says she suffered through a decade of pain before making the shocking discovery of what was causing her illness.

“In 2010 I started becoming sick with severe joint pain, depression and unexplained inflammation,” Melissa Lima, from Texas, told her TikTok followers.

“After 100s of doctors and still no answer, I just gave up.”

It wasn’t until a friend pointed it out that the 49-year-old realised the mystery symptoms could be linked to her breast implants.

By the time surgeons removed them two years later, one of her implants was inexplicably filled with mould.

Melissa Lima with a puffy face.
Melissa Lima says she started becoming unwell in 2010 but doctors couldn't work out what was wrong with her. Source: TikTok

Breast implant decision saved her life

Ms Lima, the former wife of the late baseball player Josa Lima, says she got breast implants in 2002 because being in front of the camera made her feel insecure about her body.

It was a decision that would ultimately come back to haunt the single mother.

Suffering debilitating conditions, the 49-year-old explained that she wasn’t even able to get out of bed to cook for her sons.

“I would often wonder if they would be better without me,” she said.

Then one day a good friend suggested that she research Breast Implant Illness and in October, 2020 Ms Lima made a decision that “literally saved” her life.”

A clear breast implant (left) and a brown breast implant filled with mould (right).
Doctors reversed Ms Lima's breast implant surgery and found one implant filled with mould. Source: TikTok

‘Yes, that’s mould’

The mum’s breast implant journey has since gone viral, racking up 5.3 million views on TikTok.

In the clip, titled “this is your sign", Ms Lima reveals what her breast implants looked like when she had them removed.

“Yes that’s mould,” she wrote across a photo of a brown colour implant, filled with floating bits.

In a testament to what was causing her illness, she says her symptoms began to improve immediately.

“My face and eyes literally changed within hours,” she wrote.

“I literally felt like me again.”

After making a full recovery, Ms Lima says she is now living her “best life.”

“And best of all, my sons have their mom back,” she added.

‘A big hell no for me’

After sharing her story, Ms Lima has received support from other sufferers.

“When I had my silicone implants removed two years ago they were literally grey,” one person wrote.

“I got mine out three years ago,” another said, “no more breast Implant Illness since I did it. It’s much worse than women understand.”

“I’ve been there too,” someone else added. “Explanted in 2020 and got my life and health back.”

Melissa Lima's health face (left) and Ms Lima wearing a top and skirt (right).
After having her implants removed, Ms Lima said she finally felt like herself again. Source: TikTok

While others who said they’d been contemplating undergoing the knife were now against the idea.

“I was honestly considering it but this video just made it a big hell no for me,” one woman wrote.

So far Breast Implant Illness is not a medically recognised condition.

America’s Food and Drug Administration says there is no definitive evidence to show that implants cause the symptoms women report which include fatigue, memory loss, rash, brain fog and joint pain.

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