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MRI Useful For Predicting Failure Of Metal-On-Metal Hip Implants Before Symptoms Appear
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Metal-on-metal hip implants can cause inflammation of the joint lining (synovitis) long before symptoms appear, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be used to identify this inflammation, according to a new study by researchers at Hospital for Special Surgery. The study, which appears in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery, demonstrates that MRI can be used to identify implants that are going to fail before people become symptomatic.
“The study shows that synovitis exists in asymptomatic people in a fairly high prevalence,” said Hollis Potter, M.D., chief of the Division of Magnetic Resonance Imaging at Hospital for Special Surgery, in New York City. “If that is the case, symptoms alone are insufficient to determine the health of an implant. You can’t wait for people to be sore before we evaluate them for this potential problem.” The researchers say that MRIs can help identify patients who need revision surgery before tissue sustains further damage that makes a revision more difficult.