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Blog In Health

Experts tried to warn about dangers of Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements

By Lillian Chiu
Posted Mar 26, 2012 in Health
The safety of metal-on-metal hip implants has caused quite a stir in the public health community. While the issue was mostly brought to light during DePuy’s recall in 2010, evidence of the devices’ inadequacy appear to have been present for far longer. As news over the issue continues to accumulate, it becomes increasingly clear why metal-on-metal hip implants are an industry-wide failure.
Last May, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered manufacturers to conduct more safety studies with metal-on-metal hip replacements. A month ago, the Medicines and Healthcare Agency products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued updated guidelines concerning metal-on-metal hip replacements.
According to an article published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) last month, the fault lies with both regulators, who improperly approved the device, and manufacturers, who continued to market it despite evidence of its dangers. According to the BMJ, the dangers of metal-on-metal implants have been documented since 1975, making any recent regulatory actions appear long overdue. Last Monday, an interview in the Daily Mail UK voiced similar sentiments. The article expressed the views a biomedical engineer who worked firsthand with manufacturers in developing the device; the unnamed whistleblower, along with fellow colleagues, had warned the companies about the safety risk of metallic debris generated from the implants 15 years ago. But instead of heeding their warning, the manufacturers disregarded them, placing more trust in the surgeons who “knew better”. The notion of surgeon superiority has become widespread in this industry. “‘Designed by surgeons for surgeons’ seems to be a slogan that every medical device company wants to trumpet on their new products, without stopping to consider just how ludicrous this is.” says the article. Now, it is apparent that the critics were right to worry. There is currently a plethora of information indicating that metallic ions debris is to blame for the implants’ high rate of failure. “What’s shocked me is that this scandal has taken so long to be exposed.” the author states.
Key Points:
• Recent news continues to indicate that the metal-on-metal hips are unsafe
• US and European regulators have taken regulatory action over the devices
• Problems with metal-on-metal implants have been documented for years, according to the BMJ article published on Feb. 28th
• The Daily Mail UK published an article titled "I warned about the dangers of metal hips 15 YEARS ago: A whistleblower reveals the real scandal over danger joints"
For additional information, visit:
DePuy Hip Implant Side Effects May Be Linked To Revision Surgery Lawsuits
Metal-on-Metal Hips Timeline