The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has issued updated advice for patients implanted with metal-on-metal hip replacements.
Concerns have been raised over the use of the metal-on-metal (MoM) implants for years following patients developing “progressive soft tissue reactions to the wear debris” that has been associated with the devices failing.
New and updated advice is calling for all U.K. patients to be recalled for screening and testing for device failure as a precaution.
Medical directors, orthopaedic departments, surgeons, and all staff involved in taking care of patients who have had the implants are encouraged to take note and action the following updated advice from the MHRA:
- Identify, follow up and check all patients who have the MoM hip replacements implanted
- Conduct MARS MRI scans and / or ultrasound scans where applicable
- If bone or muscle damage is found in the scans, isolated fluid collection around the damaged joint should be taken for review
- Patient blood to be tested for levels of cobalt and chromium contamination. High levels of blood metal levels can be a result of adverse tissue reaction to the implants. However, results of this procedure should be taken into account with accompanying MRI scans
- Revision surgery to be conducted if required
The advice follows on from new data and continual concerns over use of the implants and how they can affect patients when things go wrong. Although the new steps initiated by the MHRA are intended to be precautionary, they are important as the safety of MoM devices continues to be investigated.
Whilst it’s great news that healthcare providers are on high alert to follow up patients, the pain and suffering patients endure if a device fails can be horrendous. Patients with MoM hip replacements implanted can suffer agonising and prolonged pain from defective implants and may have to undergo corrective surgery. With such an intrusive operation, patients can be bed-bound for a long time and suffer significant restriction in mobility.
Seek legal advice now
Patients who have had MoM implants may be eligible to claim compensation for the pain and suffering caused by defective hip replacements. Patients undergo this kind of intrusive surgery to improve mobility; not to develop progressive adverse reactions that can cause permanent and serious injuries and damage.
If you have had a MoM hip replacement implanted, check with your GP regularly to see if the implant is having an adverse reaction to the tissue in your joints. If you’re suffering from adverse reactions, you have every right to seek financial compensation. Whilst the money might not take away the pain and suffering, it can improve a victim’s quality of life, and this is often essential.