DePuy Hip Implant Litigation

Lawsuits against DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., continue to mount as the number of failing hip implants grows. At least 600 lawsuits have been filed so far against the manufacturer, a Johnson & Johnson company.

With a failure rate of at least 12 to 13 percent within five years of implantation, many more lawsuits are expected to be filed. Some have placed the failure rate at 49 percent.

A professor of biomedical engineering at Newcastle University in the United Kingdom says the recall is a "medical disaster." "It is the biggest disaster in the history of Orthopaedics," according to Professor Dr. Thomas Joyce.

DePuy Hip Implant Multidistrict Litigation

Because of the large number of lawsuits filed and many more being anticipated as a growing number of people discover their implants are failing, the litigation is being consolidated into Multidistrict Litigation (MDL). In December 2010, a judicial panel ruled that all pretrial hearings in federal lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson would be overseen by a federal judge in Ohio.

The seven-judge MDL panel was created in 1968 to determine if lawsuits filed in different federal courts have common issues that would best be consolidated for pretrial hearings. After the pretrial proceedings are finished, the individual lawsuits are sent back to the courts where they were first filed.

In August 2010, DePuy recalled two hip implants:

  • ASR™ XL Acetabular System
  • DePuy ASR™ Hip Resurfacing system

Having an artificial hip recalled is an especially arduous situation for patients with these implants. Surgery, called revision surgery, is required to repair or replace the defective implant.

Once in the body for a number of years, surrounding tissue adheres to the implant, making it more difficult and painful to remove before a new implant is put in place. In addition, because of bone deterioration and tissue inflammation, inserting a new implant can be a more difficult and less successful procedure than the initial surgery.

Until they were recalled, 93,000 hips had been transplanted in patients around the world. DePuy was slow to initiate the recall. The company waited until August 2010 to implement the recall despite the fact that lawsuits were being filed and surgeons and patients had been complaining to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for years.

Major problems with the artificial hips include:

  • The metal-on-metal design of the implant is causing tiny particles of metal to be released into nearby tissues and the blood stream. This inflames surrounding tissues and results in a buildup of metal ions in the blood.
  • The ball-and-socket design is also flawed. The implant consists of a cup placed into the pelvis and a stem topped by a ball that articulates within the cup. The cup, many surgeons complain, is difficult to insert during the operation. It is too shallow to hold the artificial ball properly. The implant fails when the ball pops out of the shallow cup. This is an emergency medical situation that is very painful.
  • The stem that is inserted into the thigh bone has been fracturing, also causing the implant to fail.

Have You Been Implanted with a Recalled DePuy Device?

If you or someone you love has a DePuy artificial hip that has failed, you should contact an attorney immediately to be compensated for your pain, suffering and expense. Only a qualified hip implant lawyer can get you the compensation you need and deserve.

Call 1-800-407-8416 to schedule a free evaluation of your case.

DePuy Hip Replacement Recall Information intends to provide patients with up-to-date information about the recent DePuy hip implant recalls. For more information, please select from the following:

Depuy Hip Implant News

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