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Parker Waichman attorney named to Biomet M2a Magnum MDL

Dec 12, 2012

The national law firm of Parker Waichman LLP has again been tapped for a leading role in protecting the rights of people injured by defective medical devices, this time those harmed by the Biomet M2a Magnum™ hip implant.

Attorney Daniel C. Burke has been appointed to the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee in the Biomet M2a Magnum™ hip implant Multidistrict Litigation. The appointment of Burke was made by District Court Chief Judge Robert L. Miller Jr., who is presiding over the Biomet MDL. These lawsuits were consolidated earlier this year in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana (MDL 2931, In RE: Biomet M2a Magnum Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation). 

This lawsuit seeks to qualify any recipient of the Biomet M2a Magnum™ hip implant because, as a metal-on-metal hip implant, it is in a class of medical devices putting people at risk of serious and permanent injuries, especially metallosis.

Metallosis is caused by the accumulation of metallic fragments cobalt and chromium that are released into a hip implant recipient's body through normal wear and tear of the Biomet and other all-metal hip implants. The consolidated lawsuit claims Biomet Inc. and Biomet Orthopedics failed to warn the public of the dangers of metal-on-metal hip implants. 

The firm already represents other victims of the defective Biomet M2a Magnum™ hip implant, including a most recent filing of a lawsuit on behalf of a Michigan man and a California woman who claim they experienced severe pain and inflammation and have been forced to undergo revision surgeries to correct the problems caused by the defective hip implant. 

These lawsuits and those already included in the Biomet MDL claim the Biomet M2a Magnum™ hip implant can cause high levels of chromium and cobalt ions in the bloodstream and through a recipient’s body that can lead to bone, tissue, and organ damage. It may also cause painful fluid build-up, looseness of the device, dislocation, or even squeaking and popping at the site of the implant.

All-metal hip implants have been linked to thousands of adverse event reports filed by recipients of these devices mostly in the last decade. Makers of these devices, including Biomet, used flawed and sometimes biased clinical data to show metal-on-metal hip implants were safer and more effective than traditional implants. They were supposed to last longer than a traditional implant, they were marketed to younger-than-traditional recipients because they’d require less replacement surgeries over time.

As more adverse event reports compile, it’s now clear that these claims were false. At the same time, the Food and Drug Administration – which allowed metal-on-metal hip implants onto the market through its “fast-track” approval system – has now required makers of these devices to product post-market safety data that refutes these claims, including those against the Biomet M2a Magnum™ hip implant.

As a member of the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee, Burke will play a key role in litigating pre-trial motions that affect what evidence can be admitted at a trial. An MDL is established when numerous lawsuits are filed making similar claims. Consolidating lawsuits has become an effective way at reducing the likelihood a decision can be appealed due to inconsistent rulings.

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