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Tighter safety needed on medical implants

5th November 2012

A report by a committee of MPs has called for EU safety regulations relating to medical implants to be more rigorous.

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The parliamentary science and technology committee has published a report called Regulation of medical implants in the EU and the UK

The committee said they had proof that some manufacturers were trying to get their implants improved in the EU states that had the least strict regulations in place.

Andrew Miller, the committee's chair, said: "Thousands of patients use medical implants in the UK every day without problem. When things do go wrong with implants however, it can ruin lives – as the complications with metal-on-metal hip replacements have sadly shown."

"We were shocked to hear about the practice of so-called 'forum shopping'. Much greater transparency is needed about the approval process so patients and doctors can have full confidence in the implants they are using."

Two years ago DePuy's metal-on-metal hip implants were recalled around the world because data from the National Joint Registry in England and Wales revealed high amounts of people had problems with them and needed repeat surgeries.

Professor Norman Williams, president of the Royal College of Surgeons, said: "The college strongly supports the science and technology committee’s recommendation that an increase of transparency and accountability across the entire regulatory framework for medical implants is urgently needed."

 

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