Law Offices of Tom Plouff
tom plouff phone 312-637-9141

UPDATE NOVEMBER 2013

Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy Orthopaedics has agreed to settle another lawsuit scheduled for October 2013, over their recalled ASR hip replacement, once again reaching a resolution only days before trial was scheduled to begin.

The first “bellwether” trials in the federal DePuy ASR cases are expected to begin in January 2014.  There have been rumors of an impending settlement of the federal cases but nothing has yet been finalized.

First Settlements in Defective Hip Implant Lawsuits

Johnson & Johnson has reached the first settlement in cases involving the DePuy ASR hip implant devices. The DePuy ASR hip implant devices were recalled in August 2010 after complaints that they had failed in large numbers.

The settlement was reached with plaintiffs in cases that are beleived to be among the first to be presented to a jury in the United States later this year. Details surrounding the the settlement have not been released by either side.

Additional trial dates are scheduled for January 2013 in Maryland.

DuPuy ASR Hip Implant Lawsuits

There are approximately 8,000 lawsuits claiming that DePuy ASR hip implants are defective and caused injury.

About 6,000 federal lawsuits have been filed into the multidistrict litigation (MDL) as part of the DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc. ASR Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation centralized before Judge David Katz in the U.S. District Court, District of Northern Ohio, the first trial of which is scheduled for May 6, 2013.

If you received a DePuy hip replacement device, I am interested in reviewing your legal options with you for free, contact my office today.

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FDA Committee to Examine Safety of Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacement Systems

UPDATE – June 2012 – 

The FDA has created an advisory committee that will meet this week to examine the safety of metal-on-metal hip replacement systems as concerns over the use of these products grows.

The meeting was scheduled in response to concerns that the implants, which may release microscopic metal shavings into the body, are harmful. The committee is charged with advising the FDA on how to proceed. The FDA states that it is considering making metal-on-metal hip systems “subject to more rigorous testing and premarket review requirements.”

Metal-on-metal hip replacements have fallen under increasing scrutiny. The hip replacements were heavily marketed by manufacturers as being a stronger more durable artificial hip system. While the use of the metal-on-metal systems was popular for some time, the recent scrutiny has caused the use of the products to wane. But hundreds of thousands of people in the United States still have the implants, and concerns remain over future risks they may face.

In August 2010, DePuy Orthopaedics (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson) issued a recall of its products. Some recent estimates note the failure rates for the DePuy ASR hip replacements could be as high as 50%.

Over 6,000 people have filed a lawsuit alleging the Johnson & Johnson failed to properly research the design of their product. The ASR hip replacement lawsuits are pending.

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DePuy MDL Status

UPDATE – May 2012 – 

Upwards of 35 millions pages of documents have been provided by DePuy in regards to the multi-district litigation against the company. Already as much as 34 days of depositions have been taken, with more to come.

The court is ready to pursue trial dates in May and July of 2013. While not assured, it is anticipated that at least one case will be tried in the Northern District of Ohio.

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Johnson & Johnson Recalls DePuy Orthopedics’ Hip Implants

UPDATE – May 2012 – 

DePuy ASR hip replacement lawsuits have been filed throughout the United States. The first trial date has been scheduled for the end of this year. Additional trial dates are expected to be scheduled early in 2013.

Of the over 6,000 hip replacement lawsuits filed, approximately 4,200 of the complaints have been consolidated before U.S. District Judge David Katz as part of a multidistrict litigation (or MDL).

Over 93,000 DePuy ASR hip implants were sold worldwide before the recall in 2010. The DePuy ASR is a metal-on-metal hip replacement system. As the metal parts rub, microscopic particles may be cast into the body, which can cause the device to become loose or fail.

DePuy, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, is not the only manufacturer of metal-on-metal hip implant systems to be called into question. Other brands involved in lawsuits include DePuy Pinnalce hip, Bioment M2A-Magnum hip and Wright Conserve hip. In June 2012, an independent FDA advisory panel will evaluate the safety of all metal-on-metal hip replacement systems.

UPDATE – April 2011 – 

Hundreds of individual DePuy ASR hip recall lawsuit filings in federal courts throughout the United States have been consolidated as part of a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio under Judge David A. Katz.

A federal judge has ordered all parties involved in the DePuy ASR recall litigation to preserve any of the removed hip replacements so that they may be used as evidence in the lawsuits.

The evidence preservation order was handed down on April 6, 2011 by U.S. District Judge David A. Katz, who is overseeing the growing number of DePuy ASR hip replacement lawsuits that have been centralized and consolidated as part of a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio.

Judge Katz ordered that all removed DePuy ASR hip replacements must be preserved and examined in a way that does no additional damage to the evidence.

This metal-on-metal hip replacement system was found to have a higher-than-expected failure rate, often resulting in revision surgery to remove the DePuy ASR hip.  More than 90,000 DePuy ASR XL Acetabular Systems and DePuy ASR Hip Resurfacing Systems were sold before the hip replacements were recalled. The manufacturers have acknowledged that data so far has shown that about 12% to 13% of these hips will fail within five years. However, as individuals with one of the recalled hip replacements continue to be monitored by their doctors, it is expected that the rate of DePuy ASR hip replacement problems will ultimately be much higher. More recent estimates have suggested that half of the people who received a the recalled hip may experiencing loosening within six years, with may requiring their DePuy ASR hip be removed.

On August 26, 2010 Johnson & Johnson announced that it was recalling two kinds of hip implants made by DePuy Orthopedics (a unit of Johnson & Johnson).

A panel of federal judges will decide whether all lawsuits over recalled DePuy ASR hip replacements should be centralized and consolidated during pretrial litigation in one courts. The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has scheduled oral arguments on a motion to centralize all federal DePuy ASR recall lawsuits for November 18 in Durham, North Carolina.

Parts included in the recall include the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System and the DePuy ASR Hip Resurfacing System.  Patients who were affected by these problem parts suffered from a variety of symptoms, including:

  • pain
  • swelling
  • problems walking

Because many patients required a second hip replacement after the first one failed, DePuy said it decided to withdraw the products.

Patients who reported problems in the first five years and had revision surgery reported a variety of symptoms, including pain, swelling and problems walking. Other symptoms that may indicate a serious problem with the hip replacement parts include:

  • Loosening – when the implant does not stay attached to the bone in the correct position
  • Fracture – where the bone around td the implant may have broken
  • Dislocation – where the two parts of the implant that move against each other are no longer aligned
  • Metal debris – where metal participles from the component parts moving together spread around the hip area.

Recently there have been findings that metal on metal hip replacement devices have a tendency to break down far before their expected life span and can spread metallic debris through the body.

Throughout the United States over 82,000 hip replacements are done annually using metal on metal hip replacement devices, of these there may be a 5% failure rate of the devices, which can affect over 4,000 hip replacement patients per year.Recently there have been findings that metal on metal hip replacement devices have a tendency to break down far before their expected life span and can spread metallic debris through the body. Throughout the United States over 82,000 hip replacements are done annually using metal on metal hip replacement devices, of these there may be a 5% failure rate of the devices, which can affect over 4,000 hip replacement patients per year.

FDA Critical of DePuy’s Practices 

In addition to DePuy’s recall, the FDA was critical of the company stating that it had illegally marketed an unapproved knee device and sold a hip implant for unapproved use.

Hip Recall Lawsuits: Contact a Hip Recall Attorney / Lawyer Today.

Many hip replacement recipients have been forced to have a second hip replacement surgery or suffer from associated issues from the defective hip replacement.  This is especially disturbing as many hip replacement recipients are older and the recovery from hip replacement surgery is challenging.

Being forced into a second hip replacement surgery is compounded by the thoughts of lost income or job, or forced medical leave, not to mention the pain and suffering associated with the procedure.

There are a growing number of hip replacement lawsuits that have been filed in federal district courts throughout the United States following a DePuy recall issued in August for approximately 93,000 ASR Hip Resurfacing Systems and ASR XL Acetabular Systems. All of the complaints involve similar allegations that problems with the DePuy ASR hip implants caused plaintiffs to face an increased risk that their hip replacement may fail, often resulting in the need for painful and risky hip revision surgery.

If you have received a DePuy hip replacement device, I am interested in reviewing your legal options with you for free, contact my office today.

PLOUFF LAW OFFICES, P.C.
(312) 637-9141.