On February 4, 2012, The Sunday Telegraph reported that metal-on-metal hip implants may be linked to cancer. According to The Telegraph, next month researchers from the University of Bristol will present their findings at the British Hip Society conference. Researchers participating in the study concluded that the metal debris from metal-on-metal hip replacements can lead to chromosomal changes, which can cause kidney cancer and bladder cancer. The Telegraph noted that that “metal traces in the blood could put major organs at risk of being slowly poisoned, and increase the chance of cancer.” In conducting the study, researchers noticed changes to cells in the bladders of more than 20 percent of the participating patients. The study’s 72 participants consisted of individuals who received metal-on-metal hip replacements. Researchers found genetic damage to the bladders of 17 people – three of whom developed full-blown cancer. These findings are significant given that damaged DNA can mutate, and develop into cancer. A spokesman for the University of Bristol told The Telegraph that the analysis of the results from the trial is ongoing, and the research will be peer reviewed and published.

Study Prompted By Fears That Many DePuy ASR Hip Recipients Unaware Of Recall

According to The Telegraph, the study was launched after the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (‘MHRA”) warned metal-on-metal hip recipients to undergo annual screenings, including scans and blood tests, if there is any indication that the hips are shedding metal debris into the bloodstream. Moreover, in January 2012, the British Orthopaedic Association sent letters to surgeons, notifying them of concerns that some of the 40,000 patients who received the metal-on-metal DePuy ASR hip replacement implants never received the recall notice. In August 2010, DePuy Orthopaedics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, issued a voluntary worldwide ASR hip recall, after receiving data from the National Joint Registry of England and Wales that 1 out of every 8 patients (12%-13%) who received the ASR hip implants had to undergo revision surgery within five years of implant. Approximately 93,000 ASR hip implants were sold prior to the recall.

Hip Replacement Lawsuits Mounting

Following the hip replacement recall 2010, litigation over the defective ASR hip implants has surged. Johnson & Johnson is defending over 4,000 hip replacement lawsuits in the United States. If you or a loved one received a DePuy ASR hip implant during hip surgery and have experienced hip replacement pain or had to undergo revision surgery, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages and other injuries. For more information about filing a DePuy ASR lawsuit, contact an attorney at Bernstein Liebhard LLP for a free and confidential case evaluation. Our DePuy hip replacement lawyers have extensive litigation experience, and have recovered billions of dollars for their clients. In addition to being staunch advocates for your claim, our team of hip replacement lawyers also provides personal attention to guide you through the complex litigation process.

Published February 10, 2012 by