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Study Says Metal Orthopedic Implants Unlikely to Trigger Allergy

Despite concerns about cobalt and chromium coating debris on metal hip replacements, noted dermatologist says there is little risk that patients will have a skin reaction or joint pain from the devices.
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There is little risk that patients with orthopedic metal implants will have a skin reaction or joint pain from the device, Dr. Joseph F. Fowler tells Skin & Allergy News Digital Network.
 
"I do patch test patients ... who have concerns about a metal allergy or are going to have an implant. I tell them if they have a positive patch test, they may have a skin reaction," says Dr. Fowler. However, there is a small chance they will have a cutaneous reaction, and a smaller chance they will have problems with the joint.
 
 
Dr. Fowler, a noted dermatologist at the University of Louisville, tells Skin & Allergy News Digital Network that metals used in orthopedic implants include stainless steel, which is composed of an iron-chromium alloy plus nickel and molybdenum, and sometimes a little chromium and titanium; nitinol (55% nickel and 45% titanium); vitallium (iron cobalt plus chromium 30% and molybdenum 5%); and titanium. Two of the four metals contain nickel, a common contact allergen, noted Dr. Fowler.

 

Read more about the subject at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20597929

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