For many people, hip replacement procedures offer a new lease on life – one without the constant pain of hip joint inflammation. Unfortunately, what should have been less pain and more mobility for many sufferers has turned into worse pain, less flexibility, and the need for further surgeries.
Manufacturers who produced some of the medical hips were negligent and released a faulty device. Worse, however, is the allegation that these companies knew about the complications that could arise from the hip replacement, and sold the product despite the risks to patients. Touted by doctors as an answer to many people suffering from arthritis or other joint issues, they were eager to suggest hip replacement surgery as a treatment.
Types of Hip Replacement Implants
There are several types of hip replacement devices – ceramic-on-metal, metal-on-metal, ceramic-on-ceramic, and metal-on-plastic. New innovations in medical device material promised relief and more mobility to those with hip pain, particularly metal-on-metal devices. Certain types of hip replacement devices, however, were prone to failure, and metal-on-metal devices (MoMs) were some of the most common. Some manufacturers voluntarily recalled their implants, but for thousands of people, it was too late.
A list of many of these recalled devices include:
- Depuy Pinnacle Metal on Metal Hip Failure
- Stryker L-Fit V40 Metal Head Failure
- Zimmer M/L Taper with Kinectiv Technology
- Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II Hip Recall
- DePuy ASR Acetabular Cup
- Wright Conserve Plus and Profemur Z Hip Stem
If you’ve had any of the MoM replacements, the device may be on the recall list.
FDA Reaction to Hip Replacement Recall
After many patients complained of the ill effects that they were suffering after their hip replacement, the FDA called for a meeting involving the public, surgeons, and researchers. They decided against banning the devices and instead advised physicians to warn their patients of the issues surrounding these hip replacements.
If you are having pain, decreased mobility, or swelling after a hip replacement, ask your doctor today whether your implant is on this list. If you’ve had a replacement but suffer no ill effects, it’s just as important for you to know whether your implant is one that a manufacturer recalled in the event that you do begin to suffer the side effects of a defective implant.
Signs of a Failing Hip Replacement
Many people may see no indication their hip implant is failing – another reason why it’s important to know what device a doctor implanted during the hip replacement. If you are feeling some unease with your new joint, there are some signs to indicate distress. Watch for the following:
- Pain with walking
- Swelling around groin or hip
- Lumps near hip replacement site
- Dislocation/feeling like joint has moved or slipped
- Popping or squeaking noises during movement
If you have an implant that the manufacturer has recalled but don’t have these symptoms, ask your physician for a blood test to look for chromium or cobalt. Elevated levels of cobalt or chromium may indicate the hip implant is wearing down and will soon fail. These metals in the bloodstream can cause neurological issues, such as dizziness or blurred vision. They can also damage internal organs. Even if your implant isn’t causing pain, it may be best to consider a revision surgery.
What to Do if Your Hip Implant Is Failing
Treating a failing hip replacement can mean a doctor resurfacing the ball and socket of the implant – or, in the worst case, another total hip replacement, where a physician replaces the recalled hip device with a safer model. Hospitalization is often necessary, and like the initial replacement, patients will need weeks of physical therapy for the joint to function normally. As with any surgery, there are risks of infection and complication.
Patients can hold the manufacturers who released these recalled hips liable for their expenses – from loss of work to medical bills. Discuss your hip replacement with your physician, and then speak with an attorney. If your hip is failing, you shouldn’t suffer because of a manufacturer’s greed or negligence. Contact Anapol Weiss. Our experienced team of attorneys will fight on your behalf for fair compensation.