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Crystal Hefner removed her implants after experiencing scary health problems

Meagan Morris is an entertainment and lifestyle journalist living in New York City. In addition to SheKnows, Morris contributes to many publications including The New York Times, Yahoo! News, PopEater, NBC New York and Spinner. Follow he...

Crystal Hefner's breast implants were slowly 'poisoning' her

Playboy model Crystal Hefner revealed that she opted to have her breast implants removed because they were "poisoning" her body. The wife of Hugh Hefner thought she had Lyme disease and was exposed to toxic mold, but some fans pointed her in a different direction.

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"I began to receive comments saying that my symptoms resembled 'Breast Implant Illness,'" she wrote in a Facebook post. "I found a Breast Implant Illness website and Facebook group with almost 3,000 members. My symptoms matched theirs."

The symptoms included "intolerance to foods and beverages, unexplained back pain, constant neck and shoulder pain, cognitive dysfunction (brain fog, memory loss), stunted hair growth, incapacitating fatigue, burning bladder pain, low immunity, recurring infections and problems with my thyroid and adrenals." If that wasn't awful enough, Hefner added that she'd "had days in 2016 when I couldn't get out of bed. I’ve felt such despair knowing life was happening all around me but I couldn’t participate."

Breast "explants" — or the removal of implants — is increasing in popularity. Some people have them removed because they're just not into the larger look anymore; others, like Hefner, experienced serious health problems because of them. One woman even found mold in hers after having them removed.

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"Over time, implants (both silicone and saline) break down and wreak havoc on your body," Hefner wrote. "The shell on silicone and saline implants is comprised of silicone and over 40 other toxic chemicals: tin, zinc, cadmium, mercury, arsenic, formaldehyde and talc to name a few. Your immune system is constantly fighting them, leaving you vulnerable to other illnesses."

Even women who love their implants need to have them replaced every 8-10 years, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). The reason: They can rupture, like what happened to Hefner, and cause problems like Hefner's.

"The mildest of those symptoms started a few years back," Hefner continued of when she first noticed a problem. "The aches, the bladder pain, brain fog, fatigue. I ignored it, labeling myself a hypochondriac, despite truly worrying that there was something wrong with me. I joked about losing my memory to age, and about getting 'lazy.' I began to cancel appointments and shoots because everything exhausted me. Before everything went downhill I was at the gym five days a week, and always shooting and working."

She had her implants removed in June.

"Instantly I noticed my neck and shoulder pain was gone and I could breathe much better," she continued. "I know I won't feel 100 percent overnight. My implants took 8 years to make me this sick, so I know it will take time to feel better. I also have other illnesses to address, but with the toxic bags removed, my immune system can focus on what it needs to."

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