Belgium's health authorities on Wednesday advised women with defective breast implants made by French firm PIP to have them removed.
Citing an "abnormal risk of rupture," Health Minister Laurette Onkelinx recommended the "removal within a reasonable timeframe, without urgency" of the implants.
Belgian authorities had up to now only recommended that women get check-ups, ask their doctor to remove the implants made by Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) if there were any signs of seepage or rupture.
At least 674 PIP implants have been fitted in women in Belgium.
Women who refuse to have the implants removed should get MRI exams every six months, Onkelinx and the Superior Health Council advised.
More than 400,000 women around the world are thought to have received implants made by PIP, which shut in 2010 after it was found to have used substandard, industrial-grade silicone gel.
France vowed Wednesday to strengthen the regulation and monitoring of prosthetics and called for Europe-wide controls in the wake of the global health scare.
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