Medical literature has showcased several problems with metal-on-metal hip implants, such as the DePuy ASR line that was recalled in August 2010. Among the various problems, soft tissue reactions and high risks associated with metal-on-metal implant materials emerge to the top. For example, some hip implant recipients are especially sensitive to cobalt and chromium, two metal alloys commonly found in metal-on-metal hip implants. Doctors have observed “soft tissue breakdown and pseudo-tumors” in patients who exhibit these types of sensitivities, as well as other symptoms. Further discussion of these symptoms can be found here.
Additionally, physicians are beginning to balk at the use of metal-on-metal implants due to the newly uncovered information on the devices just now bubbling to the surface. As a result of recent lawsuits against DePuy in relation to the company’s flawed manufacturing processes, physicians are just now realizing some of the inherent risks associated with the metal-based units. Some medical observers predict the popularity of metal-on-metal implants could decrease as a result. Not only are physicians worried about personal liability for implanting a faulty metal-on-metal product, they are increasingly concerned with the proper maintenance of their patients’ wellbeing and health as well. Certainly, the use of metal-based devices in patients can run counter to such goals.
As metal-on-metal implants have been subjected to much scrutiny, physicians are turning to alternative joint implant materials, such as ceramics or plastic. One plastic model, known as the ADM X3 Mobile Bearing Acetabular System, has a ninety-four percent reduction in wear compared to metal-on-metal implants. Although the potential risks associated with plastic hip devices are not entirely known, they do not seem to carry the same risks of metallosis or soft-tissue poisoning that occurred in the DePuy metal-on-metal implants.
While the future of metal-on-metal implants is not entirely certain, physicians’ newfound lack of faith in metal-based medical products are surely attributable to the discoveries attorneys involved in the DePuy ASR recall litigation have made in the course of their lawsuits. Without these lawyers’ efforts, it is likely physicians would continue to remain in the dark when it comes to metal-on-metal implants. Indeed, attorneys are uncovering new truths everyday in the course of handling lawsuits against DePuy for their clients.
Keep following this blog for new details on the problems associated with the DePuy ASR hip implant, as well as other metal-on-metal implant devices. Furthermore, if you believe you have been harmed by a metal-on-metal implant, contact Berniard Law Firm for a free consultation on the matter.