Metallosis (or metal poisoning) is one side effect of toxic metal-on-metal hip implants, and it occurs when particles of chromium or cobalt leak into nearby tissues or the patient’s bloodstream. In severe cases, metallosis poisoning can cause blindness, deafness, heart damage, heart failure, permanent disability or death. Though recent studies have found that metal-on-metal hip implants have higher risks compared to ceramic or plastic designs, these devices continue to be marketed, sold, and implanted in hundreds of thousands of unsuspecting elderly Americans.
What You Can Do & How a Metallosis Lawsuit Can Help
The Schmidt Firm, LLP is currently accepting Metallosis induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured by Hip Replacement Metallosis, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Metallosis Litigation Group or call us toll-free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.
What is Metallosis?
Metallosis is also known as “metal poisoning,” occurs when the parts of a metal-on-metal hip replacement grind together and shed tiny particles of toxic metal chromium or cobalt into the body. Metallosis can cause inflammation of body tissue, loosening of the joint, death of local tissues, accompanied by corrosion of the metal hip replacement.
In severe cases, build-up of metal particles can reach toxic levels. This can cause severe neurological degeneration, vision loss, hearing loss, and degenerative heart disease leading to heart failure and death. Elderly Americans who have impaired kidney or renal function have a higher risk of suffering from hip replacement metallosis.
Symptoms of Metallosis
Cobalt poisoning is one side effect of a metal-on-metal hip implant. This report from Alaska describes two patients who suffered cobalt metallosis caused by metal-on-metal hip implants. One patient had 100-times the normal amount of Cobalt in his bloodstream. The risks of cobalt poisoning are serious and debilitating. A person may suffer lifelong disabilities, including blindness, deafness, cognitive impairment, heart damage, and death.
Symptoms of metallosis include:
- Pain around the hip implant
- Tumor-like growths that are filled with fluid
- Necrosis (death of tissues around the hip replacement)
- Elevated levels of chromium or cobalt in the bloodstream
- Loosening of the implant
- Visual impairment (blindness)
- Cardiomyopathy (heart damage that can lead to heart failure)
- Cognitive impairment
- Auditory impairment (deafness)
- Peripheral neuropathy
Treatment for Metallosis
If you are suffering from metallosis caused by a metal-on-metal hip replacement, you will probably need to have surgery to remove the hip implant and replace it with another device. Additional surgeries are painful, expensive, and time-consuming.
If you are the victim of a metallosis caused by a toxic metal hip replacement, it is not your fault. There has been growing evidence regarding the heightened risks associated with these devices since the early 1990s (most recently DePuy was forced to recall the ASR and Pinnacle designs), yet they continue to be marketed, sold, and implanted in unsuspecting people. Many of these devices were approved by the FDA with zero clinical safety studies or long-term safety studies.
If you decide to file a lawsuit, you may be able to recover financial compensation for your pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost income, decreased quality of life, and other damages. Your legal actions against the manufacturers of these products may also help send a message to the FDA and manufacturers.
Scientific Studies of Hip Replacement Metallosis
It is no secret that metallosis is a side effect of metal-on-metal hip implants. In fact, a study from 2002 described the case of a patient with a metal-on-metal hip replacement who had suffered from severe metallosis, corrosion of the hip replacement, and breakage of parts of the hip replacement.This study from 1996 also described the risk of metallosis from metal-on-metal hip implants.
The Lancet recently published a study that compared the five-year failure rate of metal-on-metal hip replacements, compared with plastic and ceramic designs. They found the following rates of failure:
- 6.2% of metal-on-metal hip implants failed after 5 years, compared with 2.3% of ceramic and 1.7% of plastic designs
- Failure rates were four times higher for women, especially those with larger hip replacements
Experts are now calling for a ban of metal-on-metal hip replacements. There is growing research that these types of hip implants have a higher risk of side effects than other types of rip replacements. Despite the fact that there are less risky alternatives, these devices continue to be used extensively.
Do I have a Hip Replacement Metallosis Lawsuit?
The Schmidt Firm, LLP is currently accepting Metallosis induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured by Hip Replacement Metallosis, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Defective Medical Device Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.
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