DePuy Orthopaedics Concedes that Recalled Hip Replacement Explants Belong to Patients
(February 18, 2011, New York, NY) DePuy Orthopaedics, a division of Johnson & Johnson, has stated to the court hearing pretrial proceedings that patients undergoing revision surgery to remove one of the company’s defective hip replacement devices are entitled to keep the explanted device. That statement was made on February 8, during a conference between DePuy hip recall plaintiffs’ lawyers, counsel representing DePuy and Johnson & Johnson, and Judge David Katz of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. The defendants in the widespread hip replacement recall case “are committed to working out a protocol that both sides will agree to.” Bloomberg News further reported that a DePuy spokesperson said that “The patient’s surgeon should take appropriate steps” to ensure that the explant is not disposed of, but returned to the former recipient. It is, in fact, the patient’s rightful property. Previously, when revision surgeries were performed, the explanted hip replacement device was either thrown away or retrieved by a DePuy representative, without the patient’s knowledge or consent.
DePuy Orthopaedics has been embroiled in a worldwide recall of its ASR XL Acetabular System and ASR Hip Resurfacing System since the devices were removed from the U.S. market in August 2010. It was discovered that they were failing approximately 5 years after implantation in 12 to 13 percent of patients. The recall has affected 93,000 individuals worldwide, with a majority of them having to undergo revision surgery to remove the defective device. Symptoms of the failing device include constant pain, swelling, allergic reaction to excessive amounts of metal deposits present in the blood, and detachment of the implant from surrounding bone. These discoveries were made by joint registries outside the United States, and U.S. regulatory loopholes that allowed these devices to be brought to market without proper testing and clinical trials.
The Rottenstein Law Group has established a Web site to address the concerns of patients experiencing symptoms from a possibly failing hip replacement device. They are encouraged to speak to a hip replacement lawyer to discuss their options, rather than dealing directly with a representative of DePuy. Victims are entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, travel expenses and medical costs that are not covered by insurance.
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