A metal-on-metal hip implant is one in which both the cup /liner and ball components of a hip replacement system are made of metal, creating a metal-on-metal articulating surface. Marketed as a long-lasting device, ideal for young or active patients, experts have determined that metal-on-metal hip implants show no advantage over bearings which include a polyethylene or ceramic component. In fact, the life of these metal devices is likely shorter than that of polyethylene or ceramic devices.
Some symptoms associated with a failed metal-on-metal hip replacement are hip or groin pain; popping, squeaking or grinding noises and sensations; limping; and difficulty recovering from a bent or seated position.
UK Recommends Annual Blood Tests for MoM Hip Implant Recipients
As the metal hip replacement components interact with one another, friction causes device wear and tiny particles of metal, called metal ions, are released into the hip capsule and blood stream. These metal ions can cause severe damage to the tissue and bone in your hip. Further, if a significant amount of metal enters your blood stream, systemic effects have been reported, including heart problems, difficulty hearing and neurological issues.
One of the tell-tale signs of a failed metal-on-metal hip replacement is thus elevated blood metal ion levels of cobalt or chromium. While orthopedic surgeons in the U.S. have indicated blood tests for patients with specific brands of MoM implants, doctors in the UK recommend annual blood tests for recipients of ANY MoM type hip replacement to measure levels of metal ions in the blood stream. See our page on metal toxicity for more information about blood tests for metal ion levels and the implications of elevated blood metal ion levels.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms described above or have been diagnosed with elevated levels of metal ions in your blood, you may have a failed metal-on-metal hip implant. Depending on the severity of the failure, you may need to undergo an additional risky and painful surgery to replace the defective hip replacement. Consult your orthopedic surgeon if you suspect problems with your hip implant.
You may be entitled to legal compensation from the manufacturer of your metal-on-metal hip device if it is in fact defective. Our office can help identify your device and review your medical records to evaluate your claim. Should we find you have a case against the manufacturer of your MoM device, we will forcefully pursue legal action, to get you the compensation you deserve for the troubles caused by your defective hip implant.
How Do I Know Which Metal-on-Metal Hip I Have?
Metal-on-metal hips from various manufacturers have been implanted over the past few years and some are still on the market. These include the DePuy ASR Hip replacement, DePuy Pinnacle Hip replacement, Biomet hip replacement and Zimmer hip replacement among others. We can obtain the medical records necessary to determine which implant you have.
However, if you would like to obtain the records for your own reference, contact the medical records department at the hospital at which the device was implanted and request the “implant sheet” from your surgery. This document contains stickers from the boxes in which the components of the device were delivered to the operating room. The stickers list the manufacturer, system type, component type, product code and lot number, as well as including a bar code, by which each component can be identified. This implant sheet will provide you with the information you need to begin research on your specific hip implant.
Contact Us Today
We would be happy to review your Metal-on-metal hip implant claim to determine whether you have a case. Call us today or complete the form at the right for a free consultation.
Our firm has been at the forefront of metal-on-metal hip litigation. We began investigations of the DePuy ASR months before its recall, filed one of the first cases against DePuy in the United States and filed the first hip implant claim against Biomet in New Jersey. We are well prepared to effectively advocate your claim against the manufacturer of your metal-on-metal hip implant.