Serum concentration and urinary excretion of titanium, aluminum, and vanadium were measured for patients who had a well functioning cementless primary total hip replacement of one of two different designs, for patients who had a loose total hip replacement that was to be revised, and for control subjects who had no implant. Serum concentrations of titanium were elevated approximately twofold in the patients who had a loose implant, compared with the values for the control subjects. No major differences in terms of urine concentration of titanium, serum concentration of aluminum, or urine concentration of aluminum were observed among any of the groups that were studied. Concentrations of vanadium were uniformly low in all groups.
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois 60612.