Stryker Makes Confidential Payout over Defective Hip Implants
The painful and toxic complications from metal-on-metal hip implants led to thousands of lawsuits against the manufacturers of these hazardous medical devices. Last week, Stryker announced a settlement in thousands of defective hip implant cases.
The makers of Stryker hip replacement components reached a confidential settlement with patients who required surgery to replace those components, a group of attorneys leading the litigation announced Friday.
A Massachusetts federal judge stayed the multi-district litigation brought over hip implants made by Stryker to allow the company and lawyers representing thousands of plaintiffs to work out a settlement.
According to reports, Stryker told Judge Indira Talwani of the U.S. District Court for Massachusetts that it reached a confidential settlement agreement to resolve the claims of certain eligible patients. The lawsuits related to the replacement of LFITTM CoCr V40TM femoral head parts along with related hip system components, court documents stated.
The settlement is the latest development in the ongoing legal saga over metal-on-metal hip replacements. Claims against the manufacturers of these implants have been progressing for almost a decade.
Manufacturers withdrew or recalled many metal-on-metal hip implants. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) points out these devices carry unique risks above and beyond the general risks of hip implants.
The manufacturers named in lawsuits included Stryker, DePuy, Biomet, Smith & Nephew, Stryker, Wright, and Zimmer.
Stryker faced at least 4,000 cases in federal, state, and local courts. A regulatory filing in 2013 indicated that Stryker expected to spend up to $1.3 billion on the lawsuits. In 2014, Stryker reached a $1 billion settlement to settle thousands of product liability lawsuits brought over its metal-on-metal hip Rejuvenate and ABGII devices.
Other manufacturers of defective hip replacements have been hit by jury verdicts.
In 2017, a federal jury in Dallas, Texas ordered Johnson & Johnson and its DePuy unit to pay out $247 million to six patients who claimed they were injured by defective Pinnacle hip implants.
What Are the Complications Associated with Metal-on-Metal Hips?
Metal-on-metal hips were developed in the 1990s as a more resilient alternative to polythene or plastic hips previously manufactured by the big drug companies. The new generation of artificial hips quickly ran into trouble.
The metal surfaces of the devices can give off small particles of debris. Metal corrodes, transferring metal ions to the patient’s body. Metal particles and ions may contaminate the area around the hip well as the transplant recipient’s bloodstream. The transferal of metal causes swelling and pain osteolysis, and symptoms in other parts of the body.
The failure of metal-on-metal hip implants is not only painful to the recipient but it typically requires additional surgery. The main side effects of metal-on-metal hips include:
- Metallosis leading to bone and tissue death;
- Pain and swelling around the implant;
- Osteolysis resulting in the loss of bone around the implant;
- Failure of the metal-on-metal artificial hips leading to further surgeries. A second surgery is called a revision surgery. Some patients required multiple surgeries.
What Symptoms Should Metal-on-Metal Hip Recipients Look Out For?
Typical symptoms may include pain in the hip or the groin, localized swelling, numbness, or changes in the ability of a patient to walk. There are numerous reasons why a patient with a metal-on-metal hip implant may experience these symptoms. It is important that you contact your doctor to help determine why you are having them as soon as possible.
The severe injuries sustained by thousands of patients over defective metal-on-metal hip implants highlights how big pharma puts profits over patient welfare with devices that were poorly tested out before they were used on human guinea pigs.
If you or a loved one has experienced complications related to a metal-on-metal hip implant, you should seek legal advice immediately. Call Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers for a free consultation at (757) 455-0077.