Failure of All-Metal Hips Two- to Three-Times Higher than Other Implants

Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Failure

Written by Faith Anderson on January 24, 2014
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Failure of All-Metal Hips Two- to Three-Times Higher than Other Implants

High-profile groups representing orthopaedic surgeons have released a landmark report analyzing the failure rate of metal-on-metal hip implants.

Defective Hip ImplantAccording to a new report published in this month’s issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, metal-on-metal hip implants appear to fail two to three times more often than other types of artificial hip replacement systems. In the report, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, The Hip Society, and the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons issued a consensus statement warning consumers and the medical community about the risk of side effects associated with metal-on-metal (MoM) hip implants, which have been plagued by a growing number of recalls and lawsuits in recent years. If you believe you have been adversely affected by side effects of a metal-on-metal hip implant, our consumer advocates at the Consumer Justice Foundation can help put you in touch with a defective hip implant attorney in your area.

Higher Risk of Failure with MoM Implants

“It has been estimated that since 1996 more than 1,000,000 MoM articular couples have been implanted worldwide,” the groups note in the statement. “However, with increasing clinical experience, the national joint registries have recently reported the failure of total hip arthroplasty (THA) with MoM bearing to be two to threefold higher than contemporary THA with non-metal-on-metal bearings.” In addition to catastrophic structural failures in these all-metal hip replacement system, the statement highlights other important reasons for the high failure rates, including adverse tissue reactions caused by metal debris being shed into the body by metal-on-metal implants.

Adverse Effects of Metal-on-Metal Hip Devices

While the report acknowledges that hip implant needs differ from patient to patient and doesn’t outright call for orthopaedic surgeons to stop using all metal-on-metal implants, the statement could prove to be the final blow for all-metal hip replacement systems, whose rise to prominence in recent years has been tainted by numerous device recalls and product liability lawsuits. After the innovative new design gained widespread use several years ago, a number of orthopaedic surgeons began voicing concerns about the artificial hips when a large number of their patients were forced to return due to tissue reactions, implant failures and other problems.

DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recall

According to adverse event reports, as the metal components of these implants rub against one another during normal use, cobalt and chromium debris may be shed into the body, potentially leading to devastating complications like metallosis – a form of metal blood poisoning – and the development of dead tissue and pseudotumors around the implants. This issue gained national attention in 2010, when DePuy Orthopaedics’ ASR Acetabular hip implant was recalled due to a higher-than-expected failure rate of up to 13%. That percentage has been revised in recent years, with some experts estimating that up to one-third of DePuy ASR implants will fail within six years.

Contact a Defective Hip Implant Lawyer in Your Area

Manufacturers of all-metal hip implants continue to face thousands of product liability lawsuits filed on behalf of patients who have required revision surgery to remove or replace their failed implants. More than 12,000 defective hip implant lawsuits have already been filed against Johnson & Johnson, and the medical device maker is expected to pay out more than $2.4 billion to resolve about 8,000 cases under a new settlement program. If you received a potentially defective hip implant, and you have since suffered from side effects like metallosis or implant failure requiring revision surgery, contact an experienced product liability lawyer in your area to discuss your options for legal recourse.

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Posted Under: CJF, DePuy Hip, Hip Implants, International, News
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