Parker Waichman LLP, a national law firm dedicated to protecting the rights of victims injured by defective medical devices, has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a woman who suffered significant personal injuries, allegedly due to the Biomet M2a Magnum Hip System. The suit was filed on August 1st in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada (Case No. 2:12-cv-01363). Biomet. Inc., Biomet, LLC and Biomet Orthopedics, LLC have been named as Defendants.
According to the Complaint, the Plaintiff was implanted with the Biomet M2a Magnum Hip System on her left hip in December 2005. Thereafter, the implant failed, forcing her to undergo revision surgery to replace the device with a new M2a Magnum Hip System. This second replacement also failed, and the Plaintiff underwent revision surgery once again. The lawsuit alleges that the device caused the Plaintiff to suffer from economic damages in the form of lost wages and medical expenses, severe and possibly permanent injuries, pain, suffering and emotional distress.
The Biomet M2a Magnum hip system uses a “monoblock” system, according to the lawsuit. This prevents the patient from being able to use any type of acetabular liner, and as a result the metal surfaces rub together with the full weight of the body. The suit alleges that this metal-on-metal design is defective, and causes an excessive amount of cobalt and chromium ions to corrode from the implant; these particles can cause the body to react negatively, and result in pain, looseness, dislocation, squeaking and popping sounds, fluid build-up, and necrosis of bone and soft tissue.
The lawsuit states that there were already over 100 adverse event reports associated with the M2a Magnum at the time the Plaintiff received her first implant. The suit alleges that the Defendants hid this information from the Plaintiff, her orthopedic surgeon and the public. The complaint states that the Plaintiff’s surgeon would not have used the hip system if the Defendants did not make misleading statements about its safety and efficacy.
A revision surgery is performed when complications associated with the hip implant become unbearable or pose unreasonable risks. According to the lawsuit, this procedure is more complex and risky; revision surgeries typically take longer than initial implantation and are associated with a higher rate of complications. Considering the fact that the Plaintiff experienced two revisions surgeries on her left hip, the suit alleges that she has been exposed to much greater risks than beforehand.
Metal-on-metal hips, which gained notoriety after the DePuy recall in August 2010, are associated with a high rate of early failure. In March, the Lancet published a study showing that all-metal hips fail at a rate of 6 percent in five years whereas metal-on-ceramic or metal-on-plastic implants fail at around 2 percent. Last month, a study published in the Orthopedics journal investigated patients with failed metal hips and found that 92 percent of the revisions were performed within three years.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has asked a number of manufacturers to conduct post-market safety studies of metal-on-metal hips, hoping that the research will provide insight as to whether the devices release toxic amounts of metal ions. In June, the agency convened an independent expert advisory panel to weigh the risks and benefits of the devices. Overall, the panelists agreed that there is little reason to use metal-on-metal hips in the future.
Parker Waichman LLP continues to offer free legal consultations to victims of metal-on-metal hip implant injuries. If you or a loved one experienced premature failure of your implant or other health problems associated with a metal-on-metal hip implant, please contact their office by visiting the firm’s Defective Hip Implants page at yourlawyer.com. Free case evaluations are also available by calling 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).
For more information regarding DePuy, Zimmer, Biomet and Smith & Nephew metal-on-metal hip implant lawsuits and Parker Waichman LLP, please visit: yourlawyer.com or call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).
Parker Waichman LLP
Gary Falkowitz, Managing Attorney