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Page last updated at 07:31 GMT, Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Fears over hip replacements


Scientists are calling for all-metal hip replacements to be banned because of fears around their safety.

A study published in the Lancet magazine, found that all-metal hip replacements fail more quickly than artificial hips made from other combinations of materials.

Ashley Blom, professor of orthopaedic surgery at the University of Bristol, told the Today programme's John Humphrys that the kind of hips being described are still being used even though the number has reduced.

He said: "I would not want a metal on metal hip replacement" preferring instead to go for ceramic on ceramic.

Prof Blom conceded that "all hips fail" so some would fail regardless of whether they were metal-on-metal or combination.

But he said that researchers are calling for these types of hip replacements to be banned altogether, even though some surgeons do still use them.

He added that, more than in the past, patients should be involved in the decision of what type of replacement is used with their surgeon.

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