Problems with your joints can cause chronic pain and lead to reduced mobility. Many people will suffer through joint pain for years before they finally accept that they will need a replacement surgery, particularly for major joints like the knees or the hips.
The surgery itself is extensive, and the recovery process requires a substantial investment of time and effort. Physical therapy is typically necessary for patients to recover full strength and range of motion after a joint replacement procedure.
Unfortunately, no matter how much effort a patient puts in, it is still possible for the procedure to fail due to issues with the actual replacement joint. Specifically, metal-on-metal hip replacement surgeries create substantial risk for patients that can impact their future health and quality of life.
Metal-on-metal replacements can impact bone healing and other critical processes
Most metal-on-metal hip replacements use a specialized ball and cup joint made from a special alloy of chromium and cobalt. Researchers developed this process to improve upon existing hip replacement techniques. Unfortunately, the metal-on-metal implant system does not work as well as was initially hoped.
Small amounts of cobalt and chromium can wind up scraped off the implant and build up in the tissue near the surgery site. This can cause both painful inflammation and impact the ability of the body to form new bone cells. Over time, the entire implant could fail, requiring a replacement or corrective surgery.
With each additional invasive surgery that you have to an already compromised part of your body, you substantially increase the potential for long-term negative health consequences. Recovery may take longer from a second surgery, and then there is also the potential impact on your work and mobility in the future.
You have rights if your metal on metal hip implant fails
Patients trust their doctors to recommend the best possible procedures and devices for their conditions. Patients also place substantial trust in the companies that develop and manufacture medical devices to adequately test them for patient safety. If you have already had a metal-on-metal hip replacement, you need to monitor yourself for any signs of trouble, such as pain and inflammation, changes in heart rate, rashes or even changes in your hearing or vision.
Those who have found that their quality of life or financial circumstances are negatively impacted by a failed metal-on-metal hip replacement surgery may have legal options. Patients may be able to hold either the doctor or the manufacturer accountable, depending on the specific circumstances.
Discussing the exact details of your hip replacement and how it failed with an experienced Colorado attorney is a good first step toward recovering necessary compensation for the inconvenience and pain the failed replacement causes.