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In an unsettling report recently published in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, medical researchers discovered that disproportionate levels of cobalt placed Stryker hip patients at a severe risk of developing harmful disorders like metal poisoning. The research study was conducted by H. John Cooper and his associates at the Rush University Medical Center, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Indiana University School of Medicine.
The research study tracked 11 patients who had recently undergone revision surgery after suffering from hip replacement issues, and high levels of cobalt were discovered in the bloodstream of these patients. According to the study, the average cobalt levels discovered in patients was 6.0, and the study results indicate that patients with revision surgeries had levels as high as 8.8, 8.9 and 9.5 in cobalt levels after the surgery’s completion.
Screening for Metal Poisoning After Revision Surgeries
The research study also indicated that patients may be at risk for experiencing severe pain after revision surgeries involving hip replacements. The authors of the study recommend that hip patients undergoing revision surgeries have an infection workup and also obtain a serologic screen to discover any high levels of metal in the bloodstream. Patients should also be concerned about joint aspiration. A joint aspiration involves withdrawing a small amount of fluid, and medical professionals can then analyze this fluid to detect the presence of metal or other suspected diseases.
On-Set Pain Following Revision Surgeries with Metal Hip Replacements
Dr. Cooper and his associates also concluded from the study that corrosion at the modular neck-body junction with a modular cobalt-chromium-alloy femoral neck can directly lead to the release of metal ions in the body. This essentially means that individuals with Stryker hip replacements may have already been at risk for suffering from metal poisoning due to the corrosion of the metal components of the equipment. Dr. Cooper and his associates also found that the 11 patients who experienced adverse local tissue reactions from their revision surgeries to correct the corrosion of metal hip replacements were likely to suffer from significant pain following the surgery.
Other Increased Metal Levels in Patients with Revision Surgeries
The 11 patients who required revision surgeries following corrosion of hip replacement devices also experienced a surge in other levels of metal in the bloodstream. The research study indicates that one 65-year old male patient had a level of titanium in his bloodstream of 5.8, and this deviated more than two points from the standard mean. Another 66-year old female patient showed a presence of titanium that was 4.9, which was also significantly over the standard mean of 3.4.
High Cost of Revision Surgeries and Seeking Legal Help
Revision surgeries are costly for patients, and they can also result in intense pain and suffering. The patients in this study have suffered from chronic pain and metal poisoning as a result of their revision surgeries. If you have also suffered from pain and metal poisoning following a metal hip replacement, then a Stryker hip recall attorney can help you understand your legal rights and assist you in getting compensation for your injuries.
- Adverse Local Tissue Reaction Arising from Corrosion at the Femoral Neck-Body Junction in a Dual-Taper Stem with a Cobalt-Chromium Modular Neck (pdf) The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery by H. John Cooper, MD, Robert M. Urban, PhD, Richard L. Wixson, MD, R. Michael Meneghini, MD, and Joshua J. Jacobs, MD