Monday, August 01, 2011

Metal from hip replacements could cause tumors

Metal hip replacements may cause soft tissue destruction and even tumors, the British health regulatory agency has warned.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) recently announced that it would test all 40,000 patients who had received metal hip implants for high levels of metal in their blood. This would indicate that the implants are wearing down and releasing debris into the body, with potentially dangerous consequences.

"Any patients who are affected by these recommendations will be contacted by their surgeon," the MHRA said, and will have their implants replaced.

The procedures in question are full metal-on-metal hip implants and hip resurfacing, which involves lining the hip socket and the top of the thigh bone with metal. In both procedures, friction can cause bits of metal to grind loose. This debris can cause soft tissue necrosis (death), which can develop into a small, non-cancerous tumor known as a pseudotumor. Read more...

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