The development of myositis ossifications is often a significant problem occurring after an initial hip replacement, or any follow-up revision surgery required because of hip implant complications. The condition is often the result of forming calcium deposits in the soft tissue surrounding the replacement hip joint. When left untreated, myositis (muscle inflammation) ossification (formation of bone) can eventually encapsulate the entire hip joint and lead to lack of mobility and increased stiffness and pain.
Many individuals that have had a Stryker hip implant have experienced significant problems since it was first introduced to the medical marketplace in 2009. Since then, the company has voluntarily recalled its Rejuvenate and ABG II hip replacement systems (July 2012) as a response to reported serious complications by thousands of patients receiving their implants.
In addition to component deterioration, floating metal debris, infection, metallosis (metal poisoning), bone loss and femur fractures, patients with a Stryker hip implant also experienced myositis ossification. Typically, the condition is more common in individuals with ongoing significant osteoarthritis with associated bone spurs. However, every patient with an existing orthopedic implant from Stryker, or other hip replacement system manufacturer, is at risk for developing the condition.
Unfortunately, a major reconstructive operation, such as revision surgery to remove and replace an existing hip implant, causes much more damage to the tissue surrounding the device than the primary procedure. This is because the revision operation is more challenging and takes longer to perform, often causing significant damage to the bone. As a result of the damage, the area is often highly susceptible to forming calcium deposits in and around the replacement device.
Signs and Symptoms of Myositis Ossifications
A patient suffering with the condition generally experiences a variety of unusual symptoms. The most common symptom is pain occurring during a variety of activities including walking up and down stairways, squatting, jumping, running, kicking, lunging or hopping. Tenderness, bruising and swelling may also occur in the muscle area surrounding the implant. Often times, patients are unable to walk normally without a limp. Usually, muscle swelling and bruising surrounding the hip replacement device will cause the area to become noticeably larger.
Often times, the discomfort and pain are so intense that the patient is unable to sleep. Additionally, the bruising and swelling may travel to the lower leg and/or knee joint. Patients will see initial notable symptoms of myositis ossification in the first few weeks after surgery. The signs may involve a noticeable lump in the surrounding muscle, and/or an increase in pain during the morning hours or at night when attempting to sleep. Often times when the condition seems to be improving, it is followed by further deterioration of the patient’s ability to remain active, due to limited mobility and pain.
Treating the Condition
Treating myositis ossification often occurs before the patient has any noticeable signs of the condition. This is because the patient may have a high potential of developing myositis ossificans that might be controlled with medication after surgery. The prescription drug may reduce the body’s ability to form bone and encapsulate the joint.
Some surgeons believe that radiation treatments, often used as a method for controlling cancer, can minimize the potential risks of damage caused by myositis ossificans. Usually, the radiation treatments begin shortly after surgery, with repeated radiation sessions throughout the first week.
Unfortunately, medication and radiation treatments are sometimes ineffective, as the condition will form anyway. Often times, the patient with the condition will experience extreme pain and restrictive motion. In some cases involving severe symptoms, the patient might require an additional follow-up operation in an effort to remove the forming calcified tissue.
Hip Revision Surgery Injury Claims
In recent years, as the number of hip replacements continues to grow, so too do the number of injury claims against implant manufacturers. Stryker, DePuy, Zimmer Durom and other orthopedic device companies have recalled many of their products from the marketplace, and are facing thousands of lawsuits by victims seeking financial compensation. This is because the necessary revision and follow-up surgeries to correct forming myositis ossification and other complications are expensive and cause significant medical problems.
Patients required to have revision surgery usually experience extensive recovery time that can last upwards of six months or longer. This usually means of the patient is unable to work. As a result, victims of defective hip implants are seeking recompense to pay medical expenses, recoup lost earnings, and obtain compensation for the severe pain, suffering and life-altering damages that have occurred as a result of the defective hip implant.