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Lisa Marie Vari & Associates, P.C.

10 Facts about Metal-on-Metal Hip Implants

By Lisa M Vari on G+

Our blog topics this week are focusing on the issue of metal-on-metal hip replacements. If you watched television lately, you've probably seen the commercials related to this medical problem. If you search for this information online, you get an overload of websites discussing all of the risk factors and symptoms associated with these hip replacements. Leave it to us to provide you with the top ten things you need to know about metal-on-metal hip replacements.

The Top 10 Things you Need to Know about Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements:

1) Metal-on-metal hip replacements involve a metal ball and metal cup which slide against each other during walking or running. Metal can be released from other areas of the implant where parts connect, causing tiny particles of metal to wear off and invade into the body near the hip implant. These metals can enter the bloodstream.

2) There is no way to fully avoid the production of metal particles with a metal-on-metal hip implant, even if your orthopedic surgeon takes extra precautions.

3) Different people react to these implants in different ways - and it is tough to predict how serious a person's reaction will be.

4) Some reactions include "adverse local tissue reaction" (ALTR) - which results when the metal particles near some implants cause damage to the surrounding bone or tissue.

5) Soft tissue damage can lead to the following: pain, device failure, loosening of the implant, and the need for "revision surgery."

6) "Revision surgery" is when the old hip implant device has to be removed and replaced with a new one.

7) If a person is complaining of issues related to their metal-on-metal hip implant, their orthopedic surgeon can perform the following tests: soft tissue imaging, use of a needle in order to remove fluid from around the joint, and blood tests in order to check metal ions in the bloodstream.

8) Other bodily symptoms related to metal-on-metal hip implants include neurological changes (visual impairments), thyroid dysfunction, psychological changes including depression, and renal functional impairment.

9) Depending on what type of metal-on-metal hip replacement you have, you may want to check for recalls of these hip implants. For example, Johnson & Johnson DePuy implants have been recalled. 

10) Contact an attorney if you are having problems with one of these implants. You may have a claim for your injuries or you may be able to join any of the large lawsuits that exist with regard to the injuries caused by metal-on-metal hip replacements.

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