Alabama man files lawsuit against maker of recalled artificial hip

When a Gaylesville, Ala., man received a hip implant in January 2007, he fully expected to keep his artificial hip for the next 15 years or more. But two years later, his device failed, leaving him in severe pain.

The man received the ASR XL Acetabulator hip replacement system, manufactured by DePuy Orthopaedics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. The hip implant was recalled in July 2010 after mounting reports of premature failure.

The man turned down DePuy and Johnson & Johnson’s offer to pay for revision surgeries to replace the defective artificial hip, opting instead to seek compensation for his claims of sustained and continuous physical injuries, severe emotional distress, mental anguish, emotional losses and other damage. He and his wife filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Rome, Ga., naming DePuy Orthopaedics, DePuy Inc. of Johnson & Johnson Services Inc., and Johnson & Johnson Inc. as defendants.

The couple’s lawsuit claims that the metal ball and socket bearings caused tiny bits of metal debris to fall into the joint space, causing wear and tear on surrounding bone and tissue, and causing the man unnecessary pain and suffering. He is among hundreds of other patients who have received DePuy’s recalled hip implant and opted to file a lawsuit. About 93,000 people world wide are affected by the recall.

Earlier this year, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered a safety review of all metal-on-metal hip replacement systems with specific emphasis on injury reports involving blood poisoning caused by the metal debris allegedly released by the implants. There are about 20 medical device manufacturers who market metal-on-metal artificial hips in the United States.

Source: Rome News-Tribune