Tribology Expert Opines on Zimmer Hip Device After Patient Diagnosed with Metallosis

Cody Porcoro

Written by
on November 9, 2017

This case involves a 67-year-old former construction worker with a history of osteoarthritis. The patient was previously taking medication for his joint pain while working, but after retiring, he continued to suffer severe pain in his hip. After consulting a doctor, he underwent a hip replacement surgery using a Zimmer hip device. However, not long after the hip replacement, he developed a rash and severe pain in his hip once again and started to have difficulty walking. He contacted his doctor who found he had developed metallosis.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Have you reviewed cases involving the Zimmer hip device? If yes, please explain.
  • 2. Have you researched, lectured, or published about metal-on-metal devices?

Expert Witness Response E-007593

I am a tenured associate professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at a major state university. My core competency is in tribology (i.e. the science of friction, wear, and lubrication, applied to prosthetic joints). I am currently and actively involved in a similar case against Zimmer, and have been involved in several hip-related cases. The case overview does not list the specific Zimmer device, but I have worked on cases in which Zimmer was the manufacturer of the device that was disputed. My research lab does work at the leading edge of hip implant research. We have funded projects by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and private industry, all related to design and evaluation of prosthetic hip joints, including metal-on-metal devices.

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