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Smith & Nephew issues recall for Modular Hip Implants

Smith & Nephew, a British orthopedics and wound care company, has issued a recall of its Modular SMF and Modular Redapt hip implants after a high number of patients began reporting adverse negative reactions. The metal designs used a modular neck that has been linked to a “higher than anticipated complaint and adverse event trend.” “Based on an analysis of available data sets,” the company wrote in a “Dear Doctor” letter last November, “Smith & Nephew considers that patients implanted with the modular neck hip prostheses may be at greater risk of revision surgery than with comparable monolithic products. For this reason, on a ... Read More

Johnson & Johnson, DePuy Slapped with $1 billion Verdict in Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Trial

In a two-month trial that ended on November 30th, the jury has found Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary, DePuy Orthopaedics, liable for more than $1.04 billion due to their hip implant systems that shed metal debris. The six-plaintiff bellwether trial verdict comes mere months after a jury ruled in favor of plaintiffs in a $500 million verdict, which was ultimately reduced to $150 million under a Texas legal punitive damages cap. This time, however, the trial is under California law, not subject to the same cap. Jurors deliberated for less than a day before finding J&J and DePuy liable for negligent design ... Read More

Ten Cases Selected For MDL over Johnson & Johnson’s Metal-on-Metal Hip Implants

U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade, a Texas federal judge, has selected 10 cases for the next bellwether trial in the multidistrict litigation (MDL) over Johnson & Johnson’s metal-on-metal hip implants. They were selected from thousands of cases waiting their turn in the giant litigation. The judge conducted his own independent review of potential bellwether cases, all of which involve plaintiffs that claim the metal-on-metal hip design caused trillions of microscopic metal particles to shed with every step, which they say led to bone erosion, tissue damage, infection, inflammation and blood poisoning known as metallosis. The cobalt-chromium alloy socket-and-ball-head hip implant system has been ... Read More

Lawyers say Medical Device Makers Pushed Metal-on-Metal Hip Implants ‘Aggressively’

During opening arguments in an multidistrict litigation(MDL) trial over allegedly faulty metal-on-metal hips made by DePuy Orthopaedics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, six plaintiffs say the manufacturer pushed their product “aggressively,” despite knowing that the metal-on-metal design was riskier than others that were available. The complaint alleges DePuy went as far as paying kickbacks to willing surgeons to encourage use of their hip implant, selling 150,000 of them in the 2000s. The hip device managed to evade standard regulatory review by going through a 510(k) FDA approval, which allows a device to be sold on the market as long as it ... Read More

Patients claiming injuries from Hip Implants continue quest for compensation despite roadblocks

Patients in New Zealand who claim they have been injured by metal-on-metal hip implants have hit another roadblock in their fight for compensation, but are not giving up. Justice David Collins in the High Court at Wellington has ruled that New Zealand’s method of accident compensation disallows plaintiffs from suing the hip implant manufacturer, DePuy International, which is based in Leeds, England. The three plaintiffs represent a larger group of 38 claimants that are seeking to file claims against DePuy, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, for compensation in regards to their failed devices. One of the claimants, James Elliott, who has become an unofficial ... Read More

U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation Assigns New Judge to DePuy ASR Hip Implant MDL

Judge David A. Katz of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, who has been presiding over the ongoing DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. ASR Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation docket from the beginning in December of 2010, passed away in July at the age of 82. The MDL has been assigned a new judge by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation. As of Sept. 2, Hon. Jeffrey J. Helmick has been assigned to coordinate pretrial proceedings. According to the New York Times, the ASR metal-on-metal hip made by DePuy Orthopaedics, subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, has been dubbed “one of the biggest medical ... Read More

World’s Toughest Plastic May Offer an Allergy-Free Hip Implant Alternative

Polyethylene, the same plastic that is used in high-voltage cable insulation, is now being used to make hip implants as an alternative to patients that may have an allergy to other hip implant materials. This new resurfacing procedure is called Polymotion Hip Resurfacing. The 3mm-thick cup is made with cross-linked polyethylene, one of the toughest plastics ever made. The procedure removes only a small amount of bone as opposed to traditional hip replacements. Because the plastic is abrasion-resistant and doesn’t melt, it is often used for industrial purposes. The material also doesn’t trigger an allergy response. Dr. Derek McMinn, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon ... Read More

UK Man Says of DePuy ASR metal hip implant, “It has blighted my life.”

Colin Gee is a 72-year-old British retired council worker from the Isle of Wight. He loved to swim 40-60 lengths, could walk for miles on end, and cared for his wife Andrea, who has dementia. The only thing that slowed him down was a metal-on-metal hip implant. Gee had received an ASR metal hip implant made by DePuy Orthopaedics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. Soon after, he reported that the new hip caused a “tennis ball”-sized swelling and kept him in daily pain. He described his life as “hell.” “The pain is always there,” Gee said. “I was very fit before. I ... Read More

1 in 5 Metal-on-Metal Hip implants Will Have to be Replaced Within 10-13 Years, Study Shows

Patients who have received a total hip arthroplasty (THA) with a metal-on-metal hip implant will most likely need a replacement within 10-13 years after they have been implanted. In a study published in June of 2015, researchers found that 1 in 5 patients will experience a failed metal-on-metal hip implant far before hip implants made from other materials will fail. James Drummond of Melbourne Medical School at the University of Melbourne in Australia, Phong Tran and Camdon Fary from the Department of Orthopaedics at Western Health in Melbourne, Australia, have found joint registry data from 2008 that showed an alarming number ... Read More

Patients with Metal-on-Metal Hip Implants Need Lifelong Blood Checks

Metal-on-metal hip implants have been a health concern ever since patients began coming forward with reports of complications from their new hips. In an article published by BBC News, patients who have received a metal-on-metal hip implant need lifelong blood checks for cobalt and chromium levels. Manufacturers of metal-on-metal hip implants, such as DePuy Orthopaedics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson,  Smith & Nephew, Wright Medical, Zimmer Biomet Holdings and Stryker are facing lawsuits alleging the devices resulted in problems including loosening, bone erosion, damage to surrounding tissue as well as metallosis, a dangerous blood condition that occurs when metal bits flake off the device and make their way into the bloodstream. The metal-on-metal ... Read More