Italy Bans Breast Implants For Minors

03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

The Italian government has banned breast enhancement surgery for girls under 18, the Telegraph UK reports. Francesca Martini, an undersecretary within Italy's welfare ministry, said the ban is targeted at teens who have don't understand the health implications of the procedure:

"Far too many adolescent girls are unaware of the fact that there are risks with this type of surgery and it should not be used purely for fashion and looks. At the moment we have a Wild West, cowboy style system of plastic surgery for young women and this must stop."

And the Italian Society of Plastic Surgeons agrees. Francesco D'Andrea explained, "Banning under 18's from having the surgery is also a good idea because these girls are just too young to be operated on. Some surgeons have no idea what they are doing and create huge risks."

There are 85,000 breast enhancement operations per year in Italy, with 70 percent for aesthetic reasons and 30 percent after cancer treatment. Approximately 10,000 teenage girls worldwide had the surgery performed in 2008.

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