Hip Implants Types: An Explanation
When facing the deterioration of joints in the human body many patients are offered the option of replacement and/or implant surgeries to restore function. Joints include the hip, knee, elbow and shoulder. The lawyers at Hurley McKenna & Mertz, P.C. are concerned that in a rush to bring these metal-on-metal implants to market, manufacturers did not adequately test the products.
The following are the most common types of hip implant systems—as stated by the FDA:
Hip Implant Systems
Every hip implant system has a unique set of benefits and risks.
An orthopaedic surgeon can determine which hip implant will offer the most benefit and least risk for you. When making a recommendation, your orthopaedist will consider several factors such as your age, weight, height, activity level and cause of hip pain. Hip surgery may involve total hip replacement, or it may involve hip resurfacing.
During total hip replacement surgery, the damaged portions of the hip joint are removed. The ball (femoral head) is removed and replaced with a prosthetic ball made of metal or ceramic, and the socket (acetabulum) is removed and replaced with a prosthetic cup. The cup consists of one or two components made of metal, ceramic or plastic. A stem is also placed in the femur to support the femoral head.
There are currently four device options for total hip replacement in the United States.
• Metal-on-Polyethylene: The ball is made of metal and the socket is made of plastic (polyethylene) or has a plastic lining.
• Ceramic-on-Polyethylene: The ball is made of ceramic and the socket is made of plastic (polyethylene) or has a plastic lining.
• Metal-on-Metal: The ball and socket are both made of metal.
• Ceramic-on-Ceramic: The ball is made of ceramic and the socket has a ceramic lining.
During total hip resurfacing surgery, the femoral head is not removed. Instead the femoral head is trimmed and capped with a metal covering. Any damaged bone and cartilage within the socket are removed and replaced with a metal shell. In hip resurfacing surgery, both components are made of metal.
Hip surgery, like any medical procedure, carries risks. The risks of surgery include:
• A reaction to the anesthesia
• Heart attack
• Wound infection
• Excessive bleeding
• Blood clots
The full report by the FDA, including this section, is available for public use at www.fda.gov.
If you believe you may have a defective hip implant, please contact the lawyers of Hurley McKenna & Mertz for a free consultation by calling 312-553-4900 or emailing Rachel@hurley-law.com.