Metallic prostheses are increasing in popularity, as an option for hip replacement procedures. One of the issues with previous hip replacement models was the wearing down of the prosthetic. Previous prosthetics included a metallic head, and a polyethylene socket. Polyethylene is a medical grade plastic, but was not particularly durable. Therefore, metal-on-metal prosthetics were invented as a more wear resistant alternative. These prosthetic models have their own issues, however. While they are more durable than the polyethylene model, they do wear over time. When the metal-on-metal option wears down, it releases metallic debris into the bloodstream, which can be quite problematic.
One project conducted by Dr. Hallab et al. studied the effects of metallic debris in the bloodstream. The study is titled “Metal Sensitivity in Patients with Orthopaedic Implants” and was published in the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery in 2001.
According to the study, all metals that are in contact with biological organs corrode. When this corrosion occurs, metal ions are formed which may activate an immune response. The immune response results in the formation of complexes with endogenous proteins. They found that dermal (skin) sensitivity is far more prevalent in patients with a joint replacement device than in the general population. The study also revealed that “Implant degradation products have been shown to be associated with dermatitis, urticarial, and vasculitis.” Oftentimes, an allergic response is observed on the skin, if the patient is sensitive to the metallic implant. However, there is not yet a test to determine if a patient will be sensitive to such implants. Additionally, it is currently unclear if metal sensitivity is somehow a factor contributing to the failure of joint replacement implants.
Due to the fact that DePuy, the manufacturer of the ASR/ASRXL metal-on-metal hip replacement systems, failed time and again to warn users of these well-documented risks, a number of DePuy ASR hip replacement lawsuits have been filed. If you or a loved one used one of these devices, contact our team of DePuy ASR hip replacement lawyers, for you may be entitled to significant financial compensation for your injuries. We have the experience, resources, and skills required to win the justice you deserve. Call today and see how we can help!
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Our DePuy ASR™ / ASR™ XL Hip Replacement Lawsuit Information page is a great place to start if you have any questions about DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip replacements.