A woman from Manchester has told of her nightmare boob job that left her too weak to brush her hair and caused her to sleep up to 20 hours a day.

Emma Thompson, 38, claims her 'toxic' breast implants led to her suffering from severe heart palpitations and pain.

Since having them removed last year, she feels she's been given a new lease of life - and has even scooped a boxing title.

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The recruitment director chose to have the op in 2006 - boosting her A-cup to a C-cup and she instantly loved her new look.

But while she adored her new-found confidence, within a few years, the former DJ began to suffer with panic attacks and muscle weakness.

Her extreme symptoms then spiraled further, leaving her in pain when she brushed her teeth, sleeping for up to 20 hours a day and even having to take breaks while climbing the stairs.

She also developed acne.

Emma said: "I felt so much more confident and loved them but in the first few years my skin started to change.

Emma began suffer with severe heart palpitations, panic attacks and muscle weakness

"I'd always had immaculate skin and all of a sudden I had sh***y skin. My anxiety got horrendously bad. I was having panic attacks every night.

"This is all linked to producing cortisol so that the body could continue to fight what it perceived as a foreign object.

"Sometimes I'd sleep for 20 hours a day then it would switch where I'd have that same level of exhaustion but couldn't sleep."

At 29, she began to collapse at home and after numerous trips to her baffled GP and a brief stay in hospital, she was left unable to walk and facing a bleak future.

Despite initial suspicions of glandular fever, Emma never felt fully recovered.

"I had some blood tests and the doctor said it might be my glandular fever reactivating. I just thought it was that but then a month later, I started collapsing in my house," Emma continued.

"It was terrifying. I thought I was having a stroke. I didn't understand what was happening.

"I rang my mum and she rushed down the motorway. We went to A&E and I was in hospital for three days.

"I left that hospital unable to walk through the doors because it was too far. I could barely get to the toilet.

"That was my life then for seven years. You feel a bit crazy because you know there's something physically wrong."

A recruitment director claims her 'toxic' breast implants left too weak to brush her hair and sleeping up to 20 HOURS a day - but since whipping them out has a new lease of life and even scooped a boxing title.

From 2013, Emma's symptoms worsened meaning she was forced to take time off work and had to even buy a new automatic car as she was too weak to change gears.

Emma said: "I couldn't even brush my own hair. I was exhausted. I used to have to use my left arm to hold my right hand in place to brush it. I had to shower sitting down.

"It was a case of when I was brushing my teeth, it was exhausting and painful.

"My legs used to burn so much by the second step of the stairs. I'd have to stop half way up.

"I had to get an automatic car because I couldn't change gears. My legs would get exhausted on the clutch. My wrists would hurt trying to change gears.

"That was it for a solid few years, I was in a really bad way. I couldn't walk the dog and had a lot of time off work.

"I also got really pronounced wrinkles on my head.

"It was hell. I lost everything that made me me. I was stuck in the house and felt like I went crazy to be honest."

Emma's implants were only half full

In desperation, Emma then appealed to friends online and was put in touch with a functional medicine practitioner who over time helped explore what might be causing her health problems.

After eliminating every other possible cause, Emma claims they were left with one explanation - her breast implants.

She was told she had Breast Implant Illness as her body was reacting to silicone that had been passing from her implants into the surrounding tissue 'and beyond' - a process called 'bleeding'.

Breast Implant Illness (BII) is a term sometimes used by people to describe a variety of health problems they associate with their breast implants.

The reports often describe symptoms like 'brain fog', fatigue, anxiety and joint pain. These health problems are very concerning for those experiencing them. There have also been reports of a serious medical condition in which the immune system mistakenly attacks the body (autoimmune disorders).

Some people have reported their symptoms improve once their breast implants were removed.

Currently we do not know if there is a link between breast implants and the reported health problems, as there is no single disease which could explain the symptoms some people are reporting to us or to their clinicians.

In 2020, more than a decade after having her breast op, Emma flew to the Netherlands and forked out £4,000 to undergo a five-hour operation to have her implants removed.

She says she was a 'different person' within hours.

Emma waking up from surgery

Emma, who has since moved from Manchester to Douglas on the Isle of Man, said: "When I had the implants out, I instantly looked like a different person.

"They were half full when they took them out. When she [the surgeon] showed me, she said 'look how much has bled into your system'.

"As soon as they were out, I was on my way back up. I was walking better on the day I had the surgery than the day before.

"[After my implants were removed] all of the panic stopped, all the palpitations stopped. It wasn't just physical symptoms. They were toxic."

"I looked like a different person. The black eyes had gone, I was still on morphine but I had a sparkle in my eyes.

Emma with her partner Jade after a training session

"The FDA has recently put a black box warning on implants. It's the highest level of warning you can get.

"[Breast implant illness] can't be denied any longer. I want to raise awareness."

After experiencing an incredible recovery, Emma flew home and spent months recuperating before returning to her passion for sport.

Over time, she gradually built herself up, from running a slow 1km to attending Thai boxing once a week.

Earlier this year, Emma was able to start training intensely for her first Thai boxing match and in October, she won her first Muy Thai fight in Bristol.

Emma during her Thai boxing match in October

Emma said: "It was a very big process from then. I had to slowly build up.

"By the end of October 2020, I started going back to Thai boxing. That was my thing, it was my love.

"It was hard as my muscles had wasted. I'd been in a really bad shape.

"I slowly plugged away at it. I wasn't sure if I could do it because I couldn't get fit enough.

"I was ill up until they came out in July 2020 and I started training properly within a few months.

"The [Thai boxing] win was great but it wasn't about the win. I knew I'd won and done well and that's brilliant, but that moment was about everything. It was about everything that'd happened in those eight years."