Send to

Choose Destination
Orthopade. 2013 Aug;42(8):622-8. doi: 10.1007/s00132-012-2035-3.

[Metal ion concentrations in patients with metal-metal bearings in prostheses].

[Article in German]

Author information

Labor für Biomechanik und Implantatforschung, Klinik für Orthopädie und Unfallchirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Heidelberg, 69120, Heidelberg, Deutschland.


Increased wear leads to elevated systemic and local metal ion concentrations for patients treated with metal-on-metal bearings. The local metal ion content in the close environment of the joint replacement (e.g. joint aspirate or tissue) is several times higher compared to the systemic metal content (e.g. in blood or serum). As a result of increased metal ion levels, local and systemic effects, such as osteolysis, pseudotumors, sensitization or in rare cases toxicity may occur. Although the definition of a specific threshold to define clinical problems is difficult due to a lack of sensitivity, the systemic metal concentration is frequently measured clinically. Currently a threshold for cobalt and chromium between 4 µg/l and 7 µg/l is under debate. Very high levels (≥ 20 µg/l) or a steady increase over time should be a warning sign; however, metal ion levels should not be interpreted as a single diagnostic tool but rather in the entire context of the clinical, radiological and cross-sectional imaging, metal artefact reduction sequence (MARS) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultrasound and computed tomography (CT) findings.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center