Scott’s parabola and the rise and fall of metal-on-metal hip replacements

BMJ 2012; 345 doi: (Published 17 December 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e8306
  1. David Hamilton, research fellow1,
  2. Colin Howie, consultant orthopaedic surgeon2,
  3. Paul Gaston, consultant orthopaedic surgeon2,
  4. Hamish Simpson, professor of orthopaedics and trauma1
  1. 1Department of Orthopaedics, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH16 4SB, UK
  2. 2Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH16 4SA, UK
  1. Correspondence to: D Hamilton d.f.hamilton{at}

Though not our intention to trivialise something that affects 30 000 people and has resulted in the loss of public trust in the most successful of surgical interventions, we would like to suggest a retrospective view of events. It is that the unfortunate episode involving metal-on-metal (MoM) hip replacements has now passed, and, actually, the system worked.

The BMJ has been at the forefront in reporting and documenting the MoM saga: dodgy regulation, “pseudo-tumours,” …

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