By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law and Carole C. Schriefer, R.N., J.D., The Health Law Firm
Choosing one hip replacement over another is one of the most important decisions a patient and a surgeon can make together. In the last ten years, there have been many types of artificial hip implants approved for use in the U.S. These options include metal-on-metal, ceramic-on-ceramic or advanced plastics such as cross-linked polyethylene, just to name a few. Although artificial hips have come a long way, not everyone is a suitable candidate for each type of hip implant. The decision to proceed with one type of hip implant over another should be based on the knowledge about past and current technology, its potential durability based on laboratory testing, and the drawbacks of its use.
With the recent recall of Johnson and Johnson’s DePuy Orthopaedics ASR XL hip implant (click here to see the press release) and Stryker Orthopaedics Rejuvenate and ABG II modular-neck components (click here to see the press release), some Florida orthopedic clinics are speaking out against using products before they have been properly tested.
Some Orthopedic Implant Products Rushed to the Market.
Recent statistics indicate that more than 500,000 Americans undergo joint replacement surgery every year, that’s according to the American Association for Justice (AAJ). In an effort to capitalize on a lucrative and expanding market, manufacturers seemed to have rushed certain orthopedic products to the market without adequate testing. As a result, some patients have been injured by products that they may not have agreed to use otherwise.
Florida Orthopedic Clinic Speaks Out.
We recently blogged about a Florida orthopedic surgeon who was inundated with revision surgeries to replace the recalled hip implants. Click here to read more.
Other orthopedic centers are taking this opportunity to address questions and concerns from patients. In particular, the Jewett Orthopaedic Clinic, based in Winter Park, Florida, recently released a statement and an advertisement that states its physicians have never used an implant that has been recalled, either voluntarily by the company or non-voluntarily by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The statement goes on to say the Jewett Orthopaedic Clinic surgeons subspecialize in hips, and they wait until products have been fully tested to begin using them on patients. To read the entire statement from Jewett Orthopaedic Clinic, click here.
DePuy and Stryker Hip Implant Lawsuits.
In August 2010, DePuy implemented a recall of its ASR XL hip implant recall, withdrawing more than 93,000 hip implants from the market. DePuy now faces more than 10,700 lawsuits from patients who suffer from chronic pain, tissue damage and metal ions in their bloodstream, allegedly due to the hip implants. The first suit to be tried in a DePuy hip implant case, approximately three weeks ago, resulted in a jury verdict of $8.3 million. Read about it here.
In July 2012, Stryker implemented a similar recall on the Rejuvenate and ABG II modular-neck components. Patients claim these products are defective. Additional action to move these cases into federal court for multi-district litigation (MDL) is expected.
Other Orthopedic Implant Products to Watch Out For.
We’ve also learned of a number of other manufacturers that are producing orthopedic implant products accused of being defective. These products include the Biomet metal-on-metal hip implant, the Wright hip implant, the Zimmer Durom Cup and the Zimmer NexGen Knee.
If you received any of these products and have experienced pain, swelling, high levels of metal in your bloodstream, a corrective revision surgery or other complications, we may be able to help you obtain compensation.
Contact an Attorney Experienced in Products Liability Litigation.
Although The Health Law Firm represents predominantly physicians and other health care providers, we are involved in products liability litigation. At the request of our clients, we have agreed to take on and prosecute a number of hip implant cases against their manufacturers for the patients. We currently are representing several plaintiff patients with DePuy hip implants and several plaintiff patients with Stryker hip implants.
We are able to combine our knowledge of the health care industry with our litigation experience for the benefit of patients. If you received a DePuy or Stryker hip replacement and have experienced pain, swelling, high levels of metal in your blood, a corrective revision surgery, or other complications, we may be able to help you. To learn more about your legal rights, contact The Health Law Firm for a consultation today.
To contact The Health Law Firm please call (407) 331-6620 or (850) 439-1001 and visit our website at www.TheHealthLawFirm.com.
Do you think some manufacturers rushed certain orthopedic products into the market without adequate testing? Have you experienced complications for a metal-on-metal hip implant? Please leave thoughtful comments below.
Jewett Orthopaedic Clinic. “Jewett Orthopaedic Clinic Has Never Used All-Metal Artificial Hips.” Jewett Orthopaedic Clinic. (January 23, 2013). From: http://www.jewettortho.com/news/2012-01-23-jewett-orthopaedic-clinic-has-never-used-all-metal-artificial-hips
About the Authors: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law. He is the President and Managing Partner of The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. www.TheHealthLawFirm.com The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Ave., Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620.
Carole C. Schriefer is an attorney with The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. www.TheHealthLawFirm.com The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Avenue, Altamonte Springs, Florida 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620.
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