Hip replacements and implants can be a great way for many people, including the elderly and those who have suffered traumatic injury, to regain their mobility. However, when they are defective or otherwise malfunction, metal-on-metal hip replacements can cause even greater injury. When this happens, victims may be entitled to compensation — and in some cases, that compensation may be substantial.
If you have been injured or made ill by your implant, contact the metal-on-metal hip replacement attorneys at Steinger, Iscoe & Greene today for a free consultation. We have decades of combined experience fighting for the rights of our clients, and we will fight for you too. Call us today at (800) 916-8108.
On of the most common issues with metal-on-metal hip replacements is a condition called metallosis. Metal hip replacements are often made with chromium and cobalt, which were supposed to be more durable than previous types of implants. But as the ball-and-socket joint of these implants rub against each other, it can release metal debris and ions into the body and the blood stream.
When this debris is scattered, it can cause a host of problems, thanks in part to the small size but large surface area of the metal particles. In addition, the longer the particles have been in the body, the more likely severe side effects will be seen.
Some of the most common complications include:
There are other complications associated with metallosis, as everyone’s body can respond differently to ions and metal debris. If you have a metal-on-metal hip replacement, and are experiencing any of the following symptoms, it’s important to consult with your doctor as soon as possible:
Various brands on metal hip replacements, including those manufactured by Stryker, have been recalled due to various complications associated with them. In some instances, they may weaken so much that the break altogether, leaving victims immobile and in extreme pain. Hip replacements and implants may fail in a variety of other ways, including slipping out of the socket.
If your hip replacement has failed, contact your doctor as soon as possible to discuss your options. Then, contact the Food and Drug Administration to report the failure of your implant. If a recall hasn’t already been issued for the make and model of your hip replacement, the FDA can launch an investigation and determine whether one should be issued.
Finally, a defective metal-on-metal hip replacement may be grounds for a lawsuit. It’s important to contact an experienced attorney to discuss your legal options. You may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit or, in some cases, be part of a class action lawsuit against the manufacturer.
If your hip replacement fails in some way, medical intervention will be required. A diagnosis of metallosis may be able to be treated with a regimen of drugs that bind to metal and allow them to be passed through urination. However, in many cases, some kind of corrective surgery will be necessary.
In more “mild” instances, corrective surgery may simply include tightening the tendons and ligaments around the implant to strengthen the area. However, if the hip replacement has fractured, weakened or some other way failed, it may need to be completely replaced.
Having a replacement surgery can be quite complex. There can be issues with scar tissue, bone loss and other factors. In older patients, bone loss can be particularly challenging. Bone reconstruction surgery may be necessary to ensure the new implant is effective. It may also be necessary to use a bigger implant to compensate for bone loss.
Depending on the nature of the replacement hip failure, the entire implant may be replaced, or just part of it. Your doctor will determine what steps must be taken through taking x-rays and other radiographic procedures. In addition, your doctor may conduct blood tests to check for metallosis, infection and other issues. It’s often beneficial to have regular follow-up radiography and blood tests performed after your initial hip implant procedure to catch any issues early.
If your hip replacement malfunctions or is defective, it’s often the manufacturer that is held legally responsible. However, in some cases, the doctor who performed the procedure could also be held liable under medical malpractice law. Doctors have a certain duty of care they must adhere to, and if they breach it, such as implanting a hip replacement that has been recalled, their actions could be the cause of a lawsuit.
To determine the best course of action for your unique case, contact the metal-on-metal hip replacement attorneys at Steinger, Iscoe & Greene today for a free consultation. We will review the details of your case and help you figure out if you have a lawsuit. There are no upfront costs; we only get paid if your case is successful. Call us today at (800) 916-8108 to get started.