Tens of thousands of lawsuits over defective hip implants have been settled over the last two years for billions of dollars. But hip implant litigation is far from over. Poorly designed hips are still failing and new lawsuits are being filed every day. There are thousands of people still suffering who have not had their hip implants replaced.
Usually, lawyers do not file lawsuits until a defective hip implant has been surgically removed. Until the hip is surgically removed and the surgeon and pathologist view the hip and the tissue in the hip compartment it is difficult to know or to prove why the hip was painful and not functioning properly. Many defective hip implants are not painful enough to justify surgical removal for 4-6 years. Since none of these hip implant cases are class action lawsuits an individual lawsuit is necessary in each case.
Most of the major medical device manufacturers are defending hip implant lawsuits. There are cases against DePuy and Johnson & Johnson for the recalled ASR metal on metal implant and for the Pinnacle Ultimet. Lawsuits have been filed over the last 8 years against Zimmer for the failed Durom Cup metal on metal or MoM hip implants. Lawsuits are being filed in California against DJO Orthopedics for the Encore metal hip implant. Thousands of cases have been filed against Stryker for the recalled Rejuvenate implant. The vast majority of the Stryker Rejuvenate lawsuits filed before November of 2014 have been settled but new cases have been piling up in the federal courts. New cases are also being filed against Stryker for failures of the Stryker Accolade hip implant stem for “crevice corrosion”. This is similar to the problem that Stryker had with the Rejuvenate hip system.
Wright Medical is defending hundreds of lawsuits in federal court in Atlanta, Georgia involving the Wright Converse MoM implant. Wright Medical was hit with an 11 million dollar verdict in the first jury trial that it defended just a few months ago.
Johnson & Johnson and DePuy are currently defending 5 Pinnacle Ultimet hip lawsuits in a Dallas federal court room. This trial is a bellwether trial for the thousands of Pinnacle cases pending in that court. DePuy settled most of the recalled ASR cases but refuses to settle the Pinnacle cases.
Johnson & Johnson won a false claims lawsuit this week in Massachusetts brought by a pair of British orthopedic surgeons. This was a fraud lawsuit against DePuy and Johnson & Johnson for lying to surgeons about the high failure rates of the Pinnacle implant. The lawsuit alleged that the revision or re-surgery rate of the Pinnacle was 15% but that DePuy reported a 4%-4.5% failure rate to the FDA and advertised to surgeons that the failure rate was 0.1%. Dr. Antoni Nargol who had been on DePuy Pinnacle Users Group brought the cases along with Dr. David Langton. Dr. Langton is a consultant for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the FDA, on failure rates for MoM hips.
The Nargol-Langston lawsuit was dismissed by a Massachusetts federal judge who ruled that there was insufficient proof to link the alleged fraud with specific instances of false billing to federal agencies.
I am hearing from hip implant patients every day that are suffering in pain and going through additional surgeries to have a hip implant removed and replaced with a new hip. I am continuing to file hip implant lawsuits and settle these cases.
It is important to hire legal counsel before a hip implant is removed and replaced because the original implant that is removed and the pathology from the surgery is critical evidence that must be preserved to prove a case against the manufacturer.
Please call or email me for a free consultation if you would like a legal evaluation of your specific case.
Admitted to both the California State Bar and the Florida State Bar, Joseph Saunders has also practiced in the United States District Court and the United States Court of Appeals. His philosophy is to provide aggressive, quality representation and seek fair compensation for individuals and their families who have suffered injury or death at the hands of insurance companies, large corporations, medical providers or governmental entities.