All-Metal Hip Implants Could Have Serious Health Risks

A 2010 recall confirmed what skeptical researchers were concerned about – serious health risks in all-metal hip implants.   Medical manufacturers hailed the all metal units as significant upgrades from mixed units containing elements of plastic, ceramic, and metal. They claimed that making the entire hip implant out of metal would increase longevity of the replacement and function more consistently. Unfortunately, they did not foresee the very real health risks that came shortly after the metal implant release.  

J&J recalled its ASR all-metal hip implant in 2010, and has since set aside $3 billion to cover legal costs related to patient claims. Recent studies have shown such products may fail at higher rates than their predecessors, and may leach high concentrations of metal ions into the bloodstream. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will convene outside experts for a two-day meeting starting on Wednesday, asking for guidance from doctors, manufacturers, researchers and the public on how to monitor patients who get the implants or need them replaced. – International Business Times

  Setting aside such a serious amount of money means J&J realizes the severity of the health risks involved and that they did not do adequate testing to foresee the chemical leaching problems.   Interestingly, it is stated that the FDA will not be pushing hard to increase safety requirements before this kind of item is pushed to market. Instead, they will be focusing on how to assist individuals who already have the implant. This is an interesting approach that leaves both the FDA and potential patients at risk for repeat events in the future.  

In 2010, about 27 percent of those implants were all-metal, a decrease from about 40 percent in 2008, the FDA said, likely due to the increased attention on the devices’ safety problems. – IBT  

It’s good to note that the number of implants is decreasing, but it doesn’t resolve the reality of manufacturers rushing products to market in order to be first and to corner the most profits.   This event comes on the heels of a recent recall of pelvic mesh implants. All in all, it has been a difficult time for individuals with pelvic and hip problems. If you’ve been injured by an all-metal hip implant, reach out to us. We may be able to connect you with an attorney that can assist you in getting proper compensation (this is a free service).

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