One of the most painful, expensive and dangerous complications of knee and hip replacements is the possibility of a revision surgery. Revisions are second surgeries performed on the implant site because of early complications or device failure. Our team of hip and knee implant lawyers reports on recent research that may help preserve joint implants.
Hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, is commonly used by women after menopause. Patients take medications containing female hormones to replace those lost, to treat hot flashes and other menopause symptoms. One recent study found that women who undergo HRT after total knee or hip replacements had at least a 40% decrease risk of revision surgery.
The study was conducted at the University of Oxford and published in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. Researchers found that, compared to non-HRT users, women who regularly took HRT in the year after hip or knee surgery reached a 50% reduction in revision risk. Nearly 25,000 women undergoing knee or hip surgery were used in this study. Mean age was 65, with a BMI of 28.5.
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The most common reason knee or hip implants fail is because of device loosening, which causes pain, bone loss and other symptoms. Revision surgeries are not only expensive, risky and painful, but they result in less than ideal outcomes for patients compared to those who only need the original surgery.
According to the Oxford researchers, the mechanisms underlying device loosening are still obscure, but related to chronic inflammation and bone loss. HRT medications are thought to protect against bone loss. Those patients who strongly adhered to the HRT treatment had significantly decreased risk of revision compared to patients with low levels of adherence.
HRT comes with its own risks and side effects, however. Among the most serious include heart disease, stroke, blood clots, and breast cancer. More information can be found here, on the Mayo Clinic’s website.
Hip and Knee Implants Recalled
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A few years ago, a new breed of hip replacements, called metal-on-metal implants (MoM), were introduced to the market. MoM implants were originally marketed to younger patients under the guise that they would allow for increased mobility in more active people. The reality, however, is that these MoM implants are extraordinarily dangerous and have been subject to massive recalls.
In 2013, the FDA confirmed that MoM hip implants have unique risks in addition to the general risks of all hip implants. Because these devices are made entirely of metal, when the ball and cup slide against each other during daily use metal releases from the implant. Metal release can cause particles to wear off into the space around the implant. This can lead to bone erosion, blood metal toxicity, and other serious complications.
Three types of MoM hip implants have been recalled:
¢ DePuy ASR TM XL Acetabular System
¢ Smith & Nephew R3 Metal Liners ¢ Zimmer Durom Acetabular Component
There are many other types of MoM hips that are injuring patients across the country. Stryker is one of the largest medical device companies that has yet to recall its MoM hip system, despite thousands of premature failures and forced revision surgeries. Companies like Stryker, DePuy, Zimmer and Smith & Nephew are now subject to lawsuits because of these MoM devices.
Medical device companies are required to design safe products and disclose all potential risks and side effects to patients and doctors. When they fail to give adequate warnings, patients have the option to file an injury lawsuit. Many patients would not have agreed to receive a MoM implant had they known about the dangerous side effects.
Lawsuits are being filed in massive numbers against these hip implant manufacturers so patients can recover compensation for ongoing medical care, surgery bills, and other damages. If you or someone close to you received a MoM hip contact our firm immediately. Even if you have not yet experienced complications, it is very likely you will in the near future and speaking with an attorney is truly in your best interest. Themetal-on-metal hip implant lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm offer free, no-obligation legal consultations to patients nationwide.