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Metal Sensitization More Likely for Women After Arthroplasty

Among patients reporting pain, women also have greater severity of metal sensitization

knee pain

THURSDAY, April 27, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients reporting pain but no infection after total joint arthroplasty (TJA), women have a higher rate and greater severity of metal sensitization than men, according to a study published April 19 in the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

Marco S. Caicedo, Ph.D., from Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, and colleagues retrospectively analyzed sex-associated rates and levels of metal sensitization in 1,038 male and 1,575 female subjects with idiopathic joint pain after TJA who were referred for in vitro metal-sensitivity testing.

The researchers found that females demonstrated a significantly higher rate and greater severity of metal sensitization than males. The median lymphocyte stimulation index (SI) was significantly lower among males than among females. SI of ≥4 (reactive) was more common in females than males (49 percent versus 38 percent). Implant-related pain was also significantly higher in females than males.

"In a select group of patients who had joint pain following TJA and no evidence of infection and who were referred for metal-sensitivity testing, females exhibited a higher level of pain and demonstrated a higher rate and severity (as measured by lymphocyte SI) of metal sensitization compared with males," conclude the authors.

Several authors are employees of Orthopedic Analysis, which provided funding for the study, and one author disclosed ties to Bioengineering Solutions.

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