FDA Evaluates Hip Implant Safety Issues Affecting 500,000 Americans

Posted on June 26, 2012

Recently, the news has been filled with stories of individuals who have been forced to suffer because their metal-on-metal hip implants failed.  This failure has been happening at rates far greater than would be acceptable to the medical community, and the problem became so rampant that recalls were issued.

Now, the Food and Drug Administration plans to get a better idea of how the failure happened and evaluate just how big the problem is.  Tomorrow, officials with the organization will begin a two-day meeting wherein they will look carefully into the safety of these defective devices, which could have been implanted in as many as 500,000 United States citizens.  They will be looking at information gathered from all over the world to make their evaluation.

The meeting comes on the heels of numerous warnings about the devices.  Based on a study which showed replacements were happening at rates far greater than those of similar devices that weren’t metal-on-metal, experts from Britain’s artificial joint registry (the largest in the world) told doctors to cease implanting the devices in patients suffering from hip pain.

The FDA plans to use this British data, as well as data from all across the world.  By combining the British data, United States data, and information from elsewhere, scientists are hoping to figure out what the most at-risk demographics are.  The next two days will also see officials querying a panel of experts as to the best way to keep monitoring those persons who have the metal-on-metal implants installed.

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