Friday, February 11, 2011

Elevated serum cobalt with metal-on-metal articulating surfaces. (Ion txicity series 4 of 14)

J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1997 Mar;79(2):316-21.
Department of Occupational Medicine, University of Vienna, Austria.
Erratum in:
  • J Bone Joint Surg Br 1997 Sep;79(5):885.

Abstract

We determined serum cobalt levels in 55 patients by atomic absorption spectrophotometry before and after implantation of uncemented total hip arthroplasties. In a randomised, prospective trial 27 wrought Co-28Cr-6Mo-0.2C metal-on-metal articulations were compared with 28 ceramic-on-polyethylene hips which did not contain cobalt. Other sources of iatrogenic cobalt loading were excluded. The metal-on-metal group produced detectable serum cobalt levels (median 1.1 microg/l after one year) which were significantly different (p < 0.0001) from those of the ceramic-on-polyethylene control group (median below detection limit of 0.3 microg/l after one year). Our findings indicate that metal-on-metal bearings generate some systemic release of cobalt.

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