Canada Sees Fewer Hip Replacement Problems than U.S.

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Hip replacements constructed entirely of metal have proven to be a serious problem in many patients in the United States and worldwide, posing a significantly health risk. This has led to surgeries to remove such metal-on-metal hip replacement devices. However, a new study conducted by the Canadian Institute for Health Information has discovered that Canadians have experienced fewer problems with their hip replacements as 75% of hip replacements performed in the country used metal-on-plastic devices rather than their all metal counterparts. Canadian patients with all-metal hip implants were shown to need a replacement implant within 5 years in 5.9% of cases, while metal on plastic implants required a replacement in only 2.7% of cases.

The rate of replacement necessary for metal hip implants is significantly higher than that of metal on plastic. In addition, the replacement rate in Canada is lower than that in the United States. Canadian surgeons were cautious about the use of all metal hip implants, preferring to use metal on plastic, a caution which has had great benefit to Canadian citizens. A voluntary registry for people with joint replacements allowed researchers to track and determine this information.

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