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The evidence from the 4 epidemiologic studies published before mid 1995, which have investigated the incidence of cancers in patients who have undergone joint implants, is conflicting. The results of the 2 earlier studies suggested a sustained increase in the risk of lymphoma and leukemia after total hip arthroplasty. The results of the 2 more recent studies have not confirmed this, although in 1 study an increased risk was observed in the first year after implantation. The heterogeneity may be statistical in origin, but could also have a biologic explanation in the greater proportion of metal on metal prostheses used before 1973. All 4 studies used national data as the comparison. Here, are presented the results of 2 matched cohort studies and a case control study set in North America and Scotland, and an overview of the 4 previous studies. Neither the results of the matched studies of patients operated on after 1973 nor the results of the latter 2 published studies suggest an increased risk of lymphoma or leukemia. If metal on metal articulations are reintroduced, careful surveillance is essential.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Clin orthop relat res

Publication Date

08/1996

Pages

S290 - S296

Keywords

Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Biocompatible Materials, Carcinogens, Case-Control Studies, Cohort Studies, Confidence Intervals, Humans, Joint Prosthesis, Leukemia, Logistic Models, Lymphoma, Middle Aged, Risk