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WA women join implant claim
Risks: The breast implants contained an industrial-grade silicone gel. Picture: AP

About 450 WA women have joined a class action seeking compensation for surgery to remove breast implants after revelations they contained an industrial-grade silicone gel.

Adelaide law firm Tindall Gask Bentley said about 1300 women had registered for a class action, with 35 per cent coming from WA.

Many of the women experienced implants that ruptured but some chose to have surgery because they were worried about possible risks.

_The Weekend West _understands the law firm plans to sue the Australian distributor of the implants but partner Tim White would only confirm a "dialogue" had begun with the insurer of an unnamed company.

Mr White said he would prefer to reach a settlement but if talks failed, he would file court papers in the first half of the year. He was confident of success.

"There have been a lot of women who have had significant complications from ruptures where they've had to undergo multiple surgeries," he said.

"Some have had portions of breast tissue removed because the silicone has become entrenched in their bodies."

Halls Head woman Tracey Nesbitt, who has registered to join the class action, paid $7500 to have her "leaking time bombs" removed last year after scans found one implant had ruptured and the other had a slow leak. Silicone seeped into her lymph nodes, leaving her with a tennis ball-sized lump, while she also suffered chest, arm and joint pain.

"Now the implants are gone I feel much better," Ms Nesbitt said.

"But I don't know what damage has been done. I still worry every day."

About 13,000 French-made Poly Implant Prothese implants were supplied in Australia between 1998 and 2010, when they were banned by the Therapeutic Goods Administration because of concerns they were more prone to rupture than other brands.

Fears about their safety intensified in December 2011 when French health officials tested the gel and found it contained industrial chemicals such as fuel additives and recommended implants be removed, although other authorities have since found the gel is not toxic.

TGA figures show that 438 confirmed ruptures have been reported to the watchdog, with a further 20 unconfirmed ruptures.