University of California San Diego orthopaedic surgeon, Dr. Scott Ball, has recorded a video available for viewing on YouTube on Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements. The video is a good one to watch if you or a loved one has had hip replacement surgery with a metal-on-metal device as it provides a lot of information about the implants, how they can affect one’s health and tests to identify if there is a problem.
Hip Implants in the News
Metal-on-metal hip implants have been in the news ever since DePuy Orthopaedics, a division of the pharmaceutical giant Johnson and Johnson, recalled the ASR XL Acetabular and Hip Resurfacing Systems because of their higher than normal revision rate. It appears as if the design of the DePuy ASR implant systems was faulty causing more wear debris than similar devices made by other manufacturers.
Studies showed that the DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implants systems are especially problematic and some studies estimate that the failure rate within in five years is 1 in 8 patients. A British society of orthopedic surgeons estimates up to 60% of the patients implanted with the DePuy ASR device will require a revision or second hip replacement surgery.
Hundreds of patients have filed claims against DePuy Orthopaedics claiming that DePuy was aware of the high failure rate of the device but nevertheless continued to market it in the United States even though it was banned in England and Australia among other countries.
Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Side Effects
In the video, Dr. Ball states that studies show that metal-on-metal implants for the most part perform “very well.” However, he explains, some patients have adverse reactions to the metal wear debris caused when the implant ball rubs against the cub and small particles of chromium and cobalt are shed. Some patients’ immune systems are sensitive to even a small amount of metal debris and they can experience adverse reactions. An inflammatory reaction can cause problems with the soft tissue surrounding the implant. Symptoms can include:
- Decreased range of motion
- Clicking or ratcheting sensation
- Slipping Sensation
Patients with the recalled DePuy hip implants have been advised by DePuy to contact their orthopaedic surgeon for evaluation. The orthopaedic surgeon may choose to perform the following tests:
- x-rays – to determine if there is bone resorption
- Blood tests to check for elevated cobalt and chromium levels in their blood serum which indicates whether there is too much metal debris being shed
- MRI or Ultrasound to check for fluid or a mass around the hip implant
Patients that have an inflamatory reaction due to their metal-on-metal hip implant should be identified and receive treatment. Often treatment will require the patient to undergo a second surgery for a new hip implant. The sooner this surgery is done, the better outcome for the patient.
Washington DePuy Hip Implant Recall Lawyer
This information is provided by Washington Injury Attorney blgo, a service of The Farber Law Group. The Farber Law Group is a personal injury and product liability law firm located in Bellevue, Washington. We currently are affiliated with a National product liability lawf irm and we provide local representation for Northwest patients with claims against DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc.