NASCAR racer Danica Patrick has opened up about her decision to have her breast implants removed, after claiming they caused hair loss, metal toxicity, weight gain, a change in her hormones, and gut issues.

The professional driver, 40, had a boob job back in 2014 because she said she wanted to have an ‘ideal body,’ but after spending years feeling unwell and not knowing why, she found out was suffering from what she believed to be a condition called Breast Implant Illness (BII).

In April of this year, Patrick – who is one of the most successful woman drivers in the history of American open-wheel car racing – revealed that she’d made the decision to undergo explant surgery, and she has now opened up about the decision in a new interview with Fox News

Speaking to the outlet, the race car driver said her symptoms of BII began in 2018, just over three years after she got her implants, and initially she wrote them off as signs that she was ‘getting older’. 

However, her symptoms soon became more severe – with Patrick admitting that it felt as though her body had been ‘slipping’ for years, and by 2021, she’d lost her menstrual cycle and realized her implants might be to blame. 

NASCAR racer Danica Patrick has opened up about her decision to have her breast implants removed (pictured before the explant surgery)

NASCAR racer Danica Patrick has opened up about her decision to have her breast implants removed (pictured before the explant surgery)

Patrick, 40, claimed they caused hair loss, metal toxicity, weight gain, a change in her hormones, and gut issues. She is pictured before getting them removed

Patrick, 40, claimed they caused hair loss, metal toxicity, weight gain, a change in her hormones, and gut issues. She is pictured after getting them removed

Patrick, 40, claimed they caused hair loss, metal toxicity, weight gain, a change in her hormones, and gut issues. She is pictured before (left) and after (right) getting them removed

The professional driver had a boob job back in 2014 because she said she wanted to have an 'ideal body' and to appear more 'feminine.' She is pictured before she got the boob job

The professional driver had a boob job back in 2014 because she said she wanted to have an ‘ideal body’ and to appear more ‘feminine.’ She is pictured before she got the boob job

After spending years feeling unwell, she found out was suffering from what she believed to be a condition called Breast Implant Illness. She is pictured after she got the boob job

After spending years feeling unwell, she found out was suffering from what she believed to be a condition called Breast Implant Illness. She is pictured after she got the boob job

Patrick said 'it felt like nothing was working' and that her body was 'slipping' after she got the implants. She is pictured after the boob job

Patrick said ‘it felt like nothing was working’ and that her body was ‘slipping’ after she got the implants. She is pictured after the boob job

What is Breast Implant Illness (BII)? 

  • Breast implant illness (BII) is a term that some women and doctors use to refer to a wide range of symptoms that can develop after undergoing reconstruction or cosmetic augmentation with breast implants
  • Symptoms include: joint and muscle pain, chronic fatigue, memory and concentration problems, breathing problems, sleep disturbance, rashes and skin problems, anxiety, depression, headaches, hair loss, and more
  • The symptoms can appear any time after implant surgery – some people develop symptoms immediately, while some develop them years later
  • In many, but not all cases, surgery to remove the breast implants improves or completely resolves the BII symptoms
  • However, neither the NHS or the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) acknowledge a single condition called breast implant illness. They do, however, provide long lists of potential – and publicly known – side effects of having breast implants
  • Implants are not designed to last a lifetime, the FDA says, and the longer a woman has the implants in her body the higher the risk of complications occurring
  • Source: BreastCancer.org 

Patrick got the breast implants removed in April of this year, and right away, she said she saw a major difference. 

Days later, she opened up about the experience on social media. Now, she is speaking out about her journey and why she decided to share it online – and according to the Wisconsin native, so many people who were suffering from the same thing have connected with her since she opened up about it on social media.

‘After hearing my story, some people may suspect they might be dealing with the same thing and not feel so alone,’ she told Fox News.

‘I’ve gotten so much feedback after I spoke out, and I get it in the most random places, like Starbucks at the airport, the bathroom of a restaurant or a sponsor appearance. That just goes to show you how this story resonates with so many people.’

Patrick got the breast implants in November 2014, and it wasn’t until early 2018 that she started to notice changes in her body.

She said she started to experience hair loss, weight gain, and fatigue – and no matter what she did, the symptoms wouldn’t go away. 

For years, the former racer, who retired in 2017, said it felt like her body was ‘slipping,’ and that she didn’t have ‘any control or understanding as to why.’

Finally, in 2021, after her menstrual cycle stopped, she decided to see a doctor and get to the bottom of what was wrong. 

‘If I go back to the first symptom, it would probably be early 2018, which is about three years after I got them,’ she revealed. 

‘My hair wasn’t quite as healthy. I had gained a few pounds and I didn’t know why. None of it made sense to me. 

‘There wasn’t a logical reason, and I’m a pretty logical person. I just wrote it off to try harder and I was getting older. 

Patrick got the breast implants removed in April, and right away, she said she saw a major difference. She is pictured after the surgery

Patrick got the breast implants removed in April, and right away, she said she saw a major difference. She is pictured after the surgery 

She wrote on Instagram, 'Within hours - my face had more color and less dark circles, and my face started producing oil again.' She is pictured before the surgery

She wrote on Instagram, 'Within hours - my face had more color and less dark circles, and my face started producing oil again.' She is pictured after the surgery

She wrote on Instagram, ‘Within hours – my face had more color and less dark circles, and my face started producing oil again.’ She is pictured before (left) and after (right) the surgery

Patrick is now speaking out about her journey and why she decided to share it online. She is pictured after getting her breast implants removed

Patrick is now speaking out about her journey and why she decided to share it online. She is pictured after getting her breast implants removed

She explained that her 'hormones were off' and her thyroid was low, and eventually, she decided to go under the knife once again. She is pictured after getting the boob job

She explained that her ‘hormones were off’ and her thyroid was low, and eventually, she decided to go under the knife once again. She is pictured after getting the boob job

‘But it wasn’t until the beginning of 2021 when my body had continued to slip in the direction that I didn’t feel like I had any control or understanding as to why. 

‘And on top of that, I lost my [menstrual] cycle. It was really losing my cycle for a couple of months that got me to go to the doctor and have my hormones checked. 

‘My thyroid was low, my hormones were off. It felt like nothing was working. Even when I look back at 2018, I remember thinking the words in my head, “Maybe it’s my hormones.” The intuition was there, but I just wrote it off and pushed on for years. 

‘My symptoms were hair loss, weight gain, heavy metal toxicity, leaky gut, and fatigue among many other things. 

‘Thyroid was another big one. I believe the most common denominator is not necessarily a symptom. It’s more so that no matter what you do, you can’t get the symptoms to go away.’

According to Patrick, so many people who were suffering from the same thing have connected with her since she opened up about it. She is pictured after getting the implants removed

According to Patrick, so many people who were suffering from the same thing have connected with her since she opened up about it. She is pictured after getting the implants removed

According to Patrick, so many people who were suffering from the same thing have connected with her since she opened up about it. She is pictured after getting the implants removed

The athlete said her other symptoms included hypoglycemia, adrenal fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, dry skin, achy hands, and swelling. She is pictured before she got her implants removed

The athlete said her other symptoms included hypoglycemia, adrenal fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, dry skin, achy hands, and swelling. She is pictured before she got her implants removed

She spoke further about it on Instagram, listing ‘hypothyroidism, dysbiosis, hypoglycemia, low estrogen – as well as low DHEA, testosterone, magnesium, white blood count, vitamin D, and progesterone – adrenal fatigue, elevated CRP, temperature sensitivity, swollen lymph nodes, dry scalp and skin, a weird perspiration to smell sometimes, dizziness, achy hands, and face swelling’ as some more of her symptoms.

When she made the decision to get the breast implants removed, she remembered feeling ‘excited.’

‘I would tell the [hospital scheduler], “If I can get it tomorrow, I’ll come in tomorrow. Just let me know,”‘ she recalled to Fox.

‘It’s like if you were going to have a baby. I’ve never had a baby before, but I’m betting that, at the very end, even though you’re having this daunting experience in front of you, whether it’s pushing a baby out or maybe a C-section, yes it’s a lot to deal with, but you’re also so ready because you just can’t wait to meet your baby. 

‘You’re just that excited. And you’re like, “Let’s do this.” I imagine it’s maybe something like that. That’s how I felt. 

‘I felt excited. Ready. Of course, the idea of getting cut open is not comforting … I knew that this stuff is done every day. I knew I would be fine.’

According to Patrick, she started to feel better ‘within hours’ of the surgery. 

She wrote on Instagram, ‘Within hours after surgery this is what I noticed – my face had more color and less dark circles, my face started producing oil again, I could take a 30 per cent deeper breath into my chest already, and I had so much energy when I woke up.’ 

As for why she decided to speak out about it online, she said she wanted to share her story in an attempt to help other women who may be going through something similar without even realizing that their breast implants are to blame – especially since BII is ‘not universally recognized.’

‘Really, at the end of the day, I felt such a pull to share my experience because I learned so many other women’s stories about it,’ she explained to Fox.

‘It gave me so much clarity about my implants being a very high culprit to all the issues that I was having. 

‘So I felt like I needed to share my story, too. And the fact that I have a good platform to do that and reach a big audience was more a positive than a negative.’

But opening up about the problems she faced wasn’t exactly easy. The entrepreneur admitted she tried to ‘hide’ her symptoms from the public for a long time, but now, she is so ‘grateful’ for the positive response.

The entrepreneur admitted she tried to 'hide' her symptoms from the public for a long time, but now, she is so 'grateful' for the positive response. She is pictured with the implants

The entrepreneur admitted she tried to ‘hide’ her symptoms from the public for a long time, but now, she is so ‘grateful’ for the positive response. She is pictured with the implants

'After hearing my story, some people may suspect they're dealing with the same thing and not feel so alone,' she said. She is pictured before she got the boob job

'After hearing my story, some people may suspect they're dealing with the same thing and not feel so alone,' she said. She is pictured after she got the boob job

‘After hearing my story, some people may suspect they’re dealing with the same thing and not feel so alone,’ she said. She is pictured before (left) and after (right) she got the boob job

She continued: ‘I was like, “Oh man, if I share this, I’m gonna have to tell people all the things I’ve been [hoping] they didn’t notice about me, whether it was my hair loss, weight gain or energy levels.”

‘I was trying to hide those things for a long time. But I’m so grateful that I did share my experience.’

According to BreastCancer.org, Breast implant illness (BII) is a term that some women and doctors use to refer to a wide range of symptoms that can develop after undergoing reconstruction or cosmetic augmentation with breast implants.

Patrick (pictured after she got the boob job) added, 'I’ve gotten so much feedback after I spoke out, and I get it in the most random places, like Starbucks at the airport, the bathroom of a restaurant or a sponsor appearance. That just goes to show you how this story resonates with so many people'

Patrick (pictured after she got the boob job) added, ‘I’ve gotten so much feedback after I spoke out, and I get it in the most random places, like Starbucks at the airport, the bathroom of a restaurant or a sponsor appearance. That just goes to show you how this story resonates with so many people’

Symptoms include joint and muscle pain, chronic fatigue, memory and concentration problems, breathing problems, sleep disturbance, rashes and skin problems, anxiety, depression, headaches, and hair loss. 

The symptoms can appear any time after implant surgery – some people develop symptoms immediately, while some develop them years later.

However, neither the NHS or the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) acknowledge a single condition called breast implant illness.

They do, however, provide long lists of potential – and publicly known – side effects of having breast implants.

Implants are not designed to last a lifetime, the FDA says, and the longer a woman has the implants in her body the higher the risk of complications occurring.

Patrick added, ‘The fact that so many women struggle. It almost feels like a hidden epidemic. 

‘I do believe there will always be a level of side effects that come with [implants]. Maybe some people do really well and it’s so minimal that they don’t notice.

‘But I also think it’s impossible to put a foreign object in your body and not have your body respond to some degree. 

‘Every individual is different, of course … But are we really doing enough studies on them? Are people truly educated on the potential side effects and risks? Doctors tell us that they’re safe, but they’re also selling them.

‘If you put something in your body that’s not natural, your body is going to protect itself. Your body will form scar tissue around it to protect you from it. 

‘And that’s called a capsule. My implants produced a lot of capsules. They seemed soft enough for the first couple of years, but then they hardened up more. 

‘I thought maybe it was from crashing into walls while I was racing, but one of them occurred years after I was done. So I knew that wasn’t it. 

Patrick, who is seen after getting the boob job and before she got the implants removed, said she thinks it’s 'impossible to put a foreign object in your body and not have your body respond'

Patrick, who is seen after getting the boob job and before she got the implants removed, said she thinks it’s ‘impossible to put a foreign object in your body and not have your body respond’

Now, she is happy with the way she looks, and is excited to be 'natural again.' She is pictured before getting the boob job in 2008

Now, she is happy with the way she looks, and is excited to be ‘natural again.’ She is pictured before getting the boob job in 2008

Patrick (pictured in 2005) is one of the most successful woman drivers in the history of American open-wheel car racing

Patrick (pictured in 2005) is one of the most successful woman drivers in the history of American open-wheel car racing

‘My body was continuing to try and protect me from them. The doctor said … my scar tissue capsules were both folded inside the implant. They had shrunk up so much from so much scar tissue forming that they were deformed.’

As for why she got the breast implants in the first place, the athlete – who recently launched her own wine brand, called Somnium – admitted that she wanted to be ‘more feminine’ and have what she thought was an ‘ideal body.’

‘I think it was more my own pressure at the beginning of how I felt like I should look,’ she told the outlet.

‘I felt like I wanted to be more feminine. I wanted to have what, in my mind, felt like an ideal body.

‘I wanted to have it all at a young age. I thought, “Let’s just get it all when you’re young enough.” 

‘In my mind, I thought I was going to be more ideal-looking. But getting them out felt more like freedom. I feel better about my body.’

Now, she is happy with the way she looks, and is excited to be ‘natural again.’

‘I feel like I look better, to be honest. I know that sounds crazy, but it’s true. I’m glad they’re out,’ she gushed.

‘I feel more like myself. I can give people hugs and not have these implants in the way. 

‘I also can’t wait to do yoga again and not have to worry about whether they’re going to lay on the floor while I do these crazy cool poses.

‘I won’t have to feel any of that weird stretching that I felt before. I’m excited to have it all be natural again.’



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