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Arthritis New Zealand urges calm over replacement hip withdrawal

The New Zealand Herald recently published a story regarding the withdrawal of the DePuy ASR hip system due to adverse results and higher than expected revision rates.

If you have had a hip replacement and are experiencing any pain or discomfort Arthritis New Zealand advises you to talk to your GP and get it checked out.

Although this issue is extremely serious for those affected, it is important to note that this particular joint replacement – the ASR – is only one of a number of possible replacement joints used in New Zealand.

While at first glance, the number of revisions may seem concerning, the New Zealand National Joint Registry reports that of the 35,000 hip replacements performed over the last five years, only 507 used the ASR implants.  From the registry 18 were replaced due to direct problems with the ASR system.

This withdrawal isn’t limited to New Zealand; the system has also been removed in Australia, United States, Canada, United Kingdom and South Africa.

For many people with osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis in New Zealand, having a hip replaced is a successful and safe procedure that is important part of reducing pain and increasing mobility.

For the thousands of people who need a hip replacement this year should not be put off by these reports.  Good communication between doctors, surgeons and patients is required to ensure you know what type of device is being used and to ensure that the follow up after surgery is undertaken.