There are many concerns for the hundreds of thousands of people who have had hip replacement surgeries using the metal-on-metal (MoM) replacement hips. With a recall announced by yet another company who makes these products, it seems to be just the tip of the iceberg. Biomet, DePuy and now Stryker have all had recalls issued for similar devices, but are these recalls too late for the patients who already have them in their bodies? With almost 17,000 complaints already logged to the FDA about adverse reactions to MoM devices, the problem seems to be getting worse.
FDA Studying Metal on Metal Hip Safety
The basics behind the medical problems associated with MoM’s are that metal particles that are released as the bearing surfaces wear over time. All hip replacements, regardless of material, wear and release particles into the body. However, the concern with MoM devices is that these particles, primarily chromium and cobalt, may cause immediate and possible long-term health problems. Some of the problems the FDA reported in a memorandum for the meeting scheduled in June 2012 for the Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Devices Advisory Panel on MoM include: