-- Robert Preidt
TUESDAY, April 3 (HealthDay News) -- People with metal-on-metal
hip replacements do not have an increased risk of cancer during the
first seven years after they receive the device, according to a new
However, a longer-term study should be done, researchers at the
Universities of Bristol and Exeter in the U.K. report.
They examined data from the National Joint Registry of England
and Wales, which contains records on more than 1 million hip
replacement procedures. The researchers compared cancer rates in
patients with metal-on-metal hip replacements, patients with hip
replacements made with other materials, and the general
The chance of a 60-year-old man with moderate health and a
metal-on-metal stemmed hip replacement being diagnosed with cancer
in the five years after surgery was 6.2 percent, compared to 6.7
percent with a hip replacement made with other materials.
For women, the risk was 4 percent for a metal-on-metal stemmed
hip replacement and 4.4 percent for a hip replacement made with
The researchers also found that the incidence of cancer is low
after hip replacement and lower than that predicted for age- and
sex-matched people in the general population.
The study was published online April 3 in the
British Medical Journal.
It's hoped that these findings will help doctors reassure
patients that the "risk of cancer for hip replacement patients is
relatively low," the researchers wrote.
However, they added that long-term data on hip replacement
patients needs to be collected over the next few decades as some
cancers can take many years to develop.
Last month, British researchers said there was "unequivocal
evidence" that stemmed metal-on-metal hip replacements fail at much
higher rates than other types of hip implants and should be
The failure rate is particularly high for stemmed metal-on-metal
hip implants with larger head sizes and those implanted in women.
In these cases, failure rates are up to four times higher than
other types of hip implants, according to the study in
The U.S. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and
Skin Diseases has more about
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