New York, New York (PRWEB) March 13, 2012
Parker Waichman LLP is calling for a ban on metal-on-metal hip implants after a study published on March 13, 2012, in the Lancet Medical Journal confirmed that all-metal hip implants fail more often than other types of hip implant devices. The Lancet findings follow a March 1, 2012, decision by British Hip Implant Society to advise against the use of certain all-metal hip implants in total hip replacement, and provides further evidence that metal-on-metal hip replacement devices are too dangerous to remain on the market. According to Parker Waichman LLP, the Lancet study will only add to growing concerns that metal-on-metal hip implants could be shedding dangerous amounts of metal debris into patients' blood streams, leading to serious health risks, including tissue damage, device failure, additional surgeries, disability, and possibly cancer.
The Lancet Study, conducted by researchers at the University of Bristol in the U.K., analyzed data from the National Joint Registry of England and Wales covering more than 400,000 hips replacements, including 31,171 all-metal ones, that were implanted between 2003 and 2011. The study data showed that there is a 6.2 percent chance patients with all-metal hips will need a replacement within five years. The revision rate for patients with all-metal hip replacements was three times greater than the revision rate seen with older implants. The risk of early failure was particularly high for patients with larger-head implants and those used in women. "Metal-on-metal stemmed articulations give poor implant survival compared with other options and should not be implanted," the study authors wrote. [thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736%2812%2960353-5/fulltext]
The Lancet study was published just days after the British Hip Society advised against primary total hip replacements with large-diameter metal-on-metal hip implants using bearings of 36 mm or larger. The study also comes two weeks after the U.K.'s Medical and Health Products Regulatory Agency advised that patients with large diameter metal-on-metal hip joints should have annual blood tests and possibly MRI scans for the lifespan of the joint. [britishhipsociety.com/MoM%20Update.htm; mhra.gov.uk/NewsCentre/Pressreleases/CON143784]
Metal-on-metal hip implants have been the subject of growing concerns since the August 2010 worldwide recall of the DePuy Orthopaedics’ ASR Hip Resurfacing System and ASR Acetabular System. The recall was issued after data from the National Joint Registry of England and Wales showed that 1 out of every 8 patients (12%-13%) who had received the devices had to undergo revision surgery within five years of receiving it. Last May, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) directed 21 makers of all-metal hip implants, including DePuy Orthopaedics, to conduct post-market studies of their products to determine if they were shedding dangerous amounts of metal debris. [depuy.com/asr-hip-replacement-recall; fda.gov/MedicalDevices/ProductsandMedicalProcedures/ImplantsandProsthetics/MetalonMetalHipImplants/ucm241604.htm]
Late last month, the British Medical Journal revealed that metal-on-metal hip implant manufacturers, including DePuy, a division of Johnson & Johnson, were aware of mounting evidence linking metal-on-metal hip replacement devices to serious, long-term health consequences, but for years failed to warn the public about these dangers. [bmj.com/content/344/bmj.e1410]
Parker Waichman LLP is already representing scores of plaintiffs in personal injury lawsuits filed against the makers of all-metal hip implants, including DePuy Orthopaedics's recalled ASR Acetabular System, as well as a metal-on-metal version of the DePuy Pinnacle Acetabular Cup System. Lawsuits involving the ASR hip implant have been consolidated in a multidistrict litigation before Judge David A. Katz in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio (MDL 2197). DePuy Pinnacle hip implant lawsuits have been consolidated in a multidistrict litigation before Judge James E. Kinkeade in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas (MDL 2244).
In light of the Lancet study findings, as well as the recent guidance issued by the MHRA and the British Hip Society in the U.K., Parker Waichman LLP calls upon the FDA to protect the public from the potentially catastrophic health consequences that may be associated with the use of metal-on-metal hip implants. All-metal hip implants pose a serious threat to public health, and should be removed from the market as soon as possible.
Parker Waichman LLP continues to offer free legal consultations to victims of metal-on-metal hip implant injuries, including DePuy Orthopaedics' ASR Hip Implant and the metal-on-metal version of the Pinnacle hip replacement device. If you or a loved one experienced premature failure of your implant or other health problems associated with metal-on-metal hip replacement devices, please contact their office by visiting the firm's defective hip implant page at http://www.yourlawyer.com. Free case evaluations are also available by calling 1 800 LAW INFO (1-800-529-4636).
For more information regarding defective hip implant lawsuits and Parker Waichman LLP, please visit: http://www.yourlawyer.com or call 1-800-LAW-INFO (1-800-529-4636).
Parker Waichman LLP
Herbert Waichman, Partner