Sunday, 16 of December of 2018

Women at Increased Risk of Trouble in Hip Resurfacing

By Jim Lewis, Medical Malpractice Lawyer

What Happened:

Last month a respected medical journal, The Lancet, published a new study revealing higher failure rates of metal-on-metal hip resurfacing when compared with conventional total hip replacement (THR). Shockingly, the failure rates were up to six times higher compared with more traditional techniques.

First, a little bit of explanation is needed to understand the difference between hip resurfacing and a total hip replacement. In hip resurfacing, the surgeon reshapes the pelvic ball or head and then places a metal cap over the newly shaped head. Then the surgeon places a metal cup on the inside of the pelvic socket or cup, which is supposed to allow that joint to function smoothly.

With a THR, the surgeon removes the entire hip joint and replaces it with an artificial joint consisting of a femoral head that is attached to a femoral stem that is drilled into the upper thighbone and a plastic liner that goes between the ball and the socket.

The Lancet revealed that in 55-year-old women, the revision rates were 8.3% for resurfaced hips and only 1.5% for THRs with metal-on-polyethylene implants, according to the study. Meanwhile in 55-year-old men, the revisions rates were 4.1% for resurfaced hips and 1.9% for THRs with metal-on-polyethylene implants.

One surgeon who took part in this study noted that the failure rates in women were unacceptably high and that, as a result, the panel recommended that resurfacing not be undertaken in women. The surgeon further noted that due to the higher failure rate of the procedure in men, preoperative measures should be used to fully assess the suitability for male patients.

The fact that the study involved failure rates of metal-on-polyethylene THR implants is critically important because of the overwhelming evidence that indicates that metal-on-metal THR implants also suffer abnormally high failure rates. For example, earlier this year The Lancet published yet another study showing that all-metal hip implants failed at an increased rate than other types of hip implants, with a five-year revision rate of 6.2%. This compared with 2.3% for ceramic-on-ceramic implants and 1.7% for metal-on-plastic types.

Some manufacturers of these all-metal implants have already recalled certain devices and are the subject of a number of lawsuits. Manufacturers include DePuy Orthopaedics, Stryker, Zimmer, Biomet and Wright Medical Technology.

The Virginia Injury Lawyer’s Perspective:

If you or a loved one has been seriously injured by a dangerous or defective product, particularly a metal-on-metal hip implant, you should contact an experienced Virginia personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. There is a finite period of time to take legal action against those responsible for manufacturing the device and once the statute of limitations expires, you are barred from seeking compensation.

Attorneys with our Virginia personal injury law firm have helped many victims of dangerous and defective products recover damages from companies whose negligence or disregard for consumer safety led to injuries.

Helpful Info:

If you or a family member has been injured by a defective or dangerous product, you can begin to learn about your legal rights and options by reading this article.

Have Questions?

We maintain a library of attorneys’ answers to frequently asked questions regarding recalled products.


About the Editors: The VA-NC medical malpractice attorneys at Shapiro, Lewis & Appleton include medical and surgical malpractice lawyers licensed in both Virginia and Carolina. Our attorneys have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctors’ mistakes, as well as nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see our track record of success in medical malpractice lawsuits, and also be sure to read our free medical malpractice reports Top 10 Tips From a Medical Malpractice Insider and Top 5 Surgical Errors. Rick Shapiro and James Lewis have been listed among the Best Lawyers in America since 2008. They, along with fellow attorney Randy Appleton, have also been named Virginia Super Lawyers since 2010, an honor fewer than 5 percent of outstanding attorneys receive.