The Advisory Committee overseeing the Alberta HIP study does not currently recommend routine testing for metal ion levels in patients who have had a metal-on-metal hip resurfacing. The committee advises metal-on-metal hip resurfacing patients to contact their orthopaedic surgeon if they are experiencing problems in their resurfaced hip.
Alberta HIP is a long-term study, begun in 2004, comparing the safety and effectiveness of metal-on-metal hip resurfacing with conventional total hip replacement. Currently, more than 1,000 Albertans are participating. They will be followed for 10 years from their surgery date.
The health significance of elevated metal ions in the blood has not yet been determined.