Hip Replacement Problems

Although hip replacement surgery is usually successful and can return a person to a fully functioning life, problems after being implanted do exist in some patients. By nature, total hip replacements are not as stable as natural hips. Some of the problems of post-hip replacement surgery include hip dislocation, deterioration of bone around the implant and more.

If you are experiencing problems with your hip implant, we may be able to help you seek financial compensation. Contact us for more information.

Hip Dislocation

This is one of the most common problems hip implant patients face. A person's normal hip has numerous surrounding structures such as ligaments, muscles and tendons to keep the ball and socket joint together. Even the boney structure of the ball (femoral head) and socket (acetabulum) in the normal joint fit together well and dislocate only under excessive duress.

In hip replacement surgery, these supporting structures are moved out of the way to allow the surgeon to remove the diseased part of the patient's hip and insert the prosthesis. Once a hip is replaced, the joint is less stable, after the natural structures heal. The ball can come loose from the socket, causing the hip to dislocate.

The ball can loosen because the patient undertakes certain movements and postures too soon, or too intensely, putting stress on the joint.

Improper Positioning of the Implant

Another problem patients have with hip replacement surgery is that the artificial hip components may not be correctly positioned in the body. The design of certain hip prostheses has made this more likely. Some surgeons working with DePuy ASR™ XL Acetabular Systems, for example, have complained the artificial acetabulum is difficult to implant.

Sometimes, as in the case of DePuy hip revisions, the artificial acetabulum comes loose and the hip dislocates. Two types of DePuy hip implants were recalled in August 2010, because they has a high failure rate.

The company said 12 percent of one type of hip and 13 percent of another type were failing or coming loose prematurely. Normal hip implants should last 10 to 15 years or longer. The DePuy hips were failing in one of eight patients in as few as five years.

Metal Debris Can Cause Problems

The shedding of prosthetic material into surrounding tissues or throughout the body via the bloodstream has resulted in problems for some patients who have metal-on-metal hip implants. Some patients today have hip implants that have a metal acetabulum that holds a metal ball.

Friction between the two that occurs with movement causes tiny particles of the metal to shed from the prosthesis. This can cause inflammation of the area around the hip joint. The tiny particles also can lodge in body parts distant from the surgical site. The FDA has required that makers of metal-on-metal hips conduct studies to determine the dangers of these types of implants.

Deterioration of Bone Around the Implant

Deterioration of normal bone surrounding the hip replacement can happen when the implant comes loose. When another hip surgery is done, called revision surgery, the implant is more difficult to attach to deteriorated bone. This can cause problems for the patient.

Legal Help for Hip Implant Problems

These are just a few problems that can occur in hip implant patients. If you've experienced problems with your hip implant, you may want to consider speaking with a hip replacement attorney about your legal rights and options. If you are experiencing problems because your implant is defective or faulty, you will be eligible for compensation. Learn more by contacting us today.

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