For the thousands made aware of the risks associated with hip implants by the latest recall, the question of “How do I know my hip replacement is defective?” frequently comes up. As a study revealed 12 percent of all DePuy implant recipients required revision, or corrective, surgery within a five-year window, finding out if the product is defective eliminates guessing and waiting and better directs a patient to necessary medical procedures and filing a lawsuit.

On July 10, consumer safety website US Drug Watchdog released a statement informing recipients of metal-on-metal hip implants to get a blood test. If the test shows that the recipient has elevated levels of cobalt or chromium cobalt in his or her blood, there’s a good chance the medical product may fail prematurely.

About this test, US Drug Watchdog said in a statement: “The national litigation involving the DePuy Pinnacle metal on metal hip implant is all about premature failures, and we now believe a very simple blood test is the best way to see if this specific type of metal on metal hip implant has failed, or has begun to fail.”

The DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System and ASR Hip Resurfacing System are not the only hip implants to be recalled, and products from Stryker and other metal-on-metal hip replacement manufacturers have been associated with pain or swelling in the hip region, difficulty or inability to walk, and elevated metals in the blood.

For this latter issue, the patient’s reaction may be more severe: In certain cases, patients display signs of a skin rash, cardiomyopathy, sensory or psychological changes, renal function impairment, and thyroid dysfunction.

Although Johnson & Johnson recently announced it plans to stop producing metal-on-metal hip implants, it is estimated that 130,000 individuals were given these devices over the past 10 years. As more and more individuals find their metal-on-metal implants prematurely failing, Trantolo & Trantolo is taking on cases concerning products from DePuy, Stryker, and other manufacturers.