Claim processing is a time sensitive process, so it is important for anyone who received DePuy ASR hip implants affected by the 2010 DePuy ASR hip recall and who found it necessary to have revision surgery since March 2015 to check their eligibility status for settlement payments.
Initially, Johnson & Johnson (J&J) had agreed to settle three DePuy ASR hip lawsuits for a combined settlement total of $600,000 in 2012. Each of the patients had to have revision surgery due to metal hip implant complications allegedly due to the DePuy ASR hip implants.
Following the first settlement in 2012, J&J has agreed to pay as much as $4 billion to settle thousands of DePuy ASR hip replacement lawsuits. Patients who are eligible can receive up to $500,000 each if they met requirements for the settlement.
DePuy Hip Implant 2010 Recall
In August 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a DePuy ASR hip implant recall that affected 93,000 hip implants. Of these recalled devices, one third were already implanted in patients in the United States. After reviewing a study conducted in the United Kingdom (U.K.), the FDA issued the recall. The U.K. study found that 13 percent of patients who received these DePuy ASR hip implants had to undergo revision surgery to resolve hip implant complications.
More active orthopedic patients were drawn to metal hip implants as they were marketed to be more durable. The DePuy hip implants are composed of metal parts, with no ceramic or plastic between the various device components. Patients with some sort of pelvic deterioration or damage that interferes with their movements are usually prescribed metal hip implants.
National law firm Parker Waichman LLP has extensive experience and success in medical device litigation, including metal-on-metal hip implant lawsuits. Attorneys at the firm are available to answer any questions for individuals seeking legal information.
Although DePuy ASR hip implants are meant to restore mobility, they have been reportedly responsible for thousands of patients’ serious pain and injuries. Metallosis, or metal poisoning can occur when the metal ball and metal cup slide against each other during normal activity, such as walking or running. This can cause some tiny metal particles to wear off the device around the implant, which may cause damage to bone and/or soft tissue surrounding the implant and joint. The metal debris may be released into the bloodstream causing necrosis (cell death), severe inflammation and other complications.
Additional problems for metal-on-metal hip replacement patients include: fretting, corrosion, bone damage, infection, and formation of pseudotumors (an abnormality that resembles a tumor but is usually benign).
Typical symptoms of hip implant failure are: difficulty walking, standing or bearing weight; loosening of the implant; clicking or snapping sounds; unexplained hip pain; hip dislocation; cysts around the joint; and bone erosion.
J&J Denial of Awareness of Implant Defects
According to an internal J&J memo, patients who received a DePuy ASR hip implant would face a 40 percent risk of revision surgery within only five years after implantation. J&J allegedly had knowledge of the defective nature of these metal-on-metal hip implants, but neglected to warn the public.
Prior J&J Settlements
In December 2016, a federal jury in Dallas ordered J&J and its subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics to pay over $1 billion to six plaintiffs who said they were injured by Pinnacle hip implants. The jurors found that the metal-on-metal hip implants had a faulty design and that the companies failed to warn consumers about the risk, according to Fortune.
J&J, which faces over 8,000 lawsuits over the hip implants, said in a statement it would appeal the verdict and was committed to defending itself and DePuy from further litigation over the Pinnacle devices. The six plaintiffs awarded more than $1 billion experienced tissue death, bone erosion, and other injuries they attributed to design flaws. Plaintiffs said the companies promoted the devices as being longer lasting than devices that include ceramic or plastic materials.
The total verdict of $1.041 billion included $32 million in compensatory damages. The rest were punitive damages. Verdicts of this size are frequently scaled back by courts. In July 2016, the presiding judge, U.S. District Judge Edward Kinkeade, reduced a $500 million verdict in an earlier Pinnacle implant case to $151 million, citing a Texas state law that limits punitive damages awards.
DePuy stopped selling the metal-on-metal Pinnacle devices in 2013 after the FDA strengthened its artificial hip regulations. J&J and DePuy also paid $2.5 billion that year to settle over 7,000 lawsuits over its ASR metal-on-metal hip devices.
Have You Been Injured by a Hip Replacement Device?
If you or someone you know has sustained injury involving a metal-on-metal hip implant, you may be eligible for valuable compensation. Parker Waichman personal injury law firm offers free, no-obligation case evaluations. We urge you to contact us at 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).