DePuy Metal Hip Recall, Lawsuits & Proposed Settlement: September 2014 Update

The DePuy Orthopaedics ASR XL Acetabular and ASR Hip Resurfacing system hip are all-metal, also called metal-on-metal, artificial hip implants. Nearly 40,000 patients in the U.S. received the DePuy ASR implant from August 2005 through August 2010, when DePuy, a unit of Johnson & Johnson, recalled the device.

On November 19, 2013, Johnson & Johnson announced its agreement to pay at least $2.5 billion to resolve thousands of defective DePuy ASR hip implant lawsuits. Under the settlement, J&J would provide a base award of $250,000 to U.S. citizens and residents who are more than 180 days from their hip replacement surgery, and prior to August 31, 2013, had to undergo a second, or  revision, to take out their faulty DePuy hip ASR XL or ASR resurfacing hip.

The $250,000 base award payment will be adjusted upward or downward depending on medical factors specific to each patient. Learn more about the proposed DePuy ASR settlement.

Patients with failing Stryker Corporation Rejuvenate or ABG II hip replacement systems should visit our Stryker Hip Systems Recall page, and patients with Wright Profemur Z implants should visit our Wright Profemur page for information about those hip injury lawsuits and their legal rights.

Why the DePuy metal ASR and Pinnacle Hip Implants Are Failing

Data from a registry of patients in the United Kingdom indicates that up to 50% of patients implanted with the defective DePuy ASR hip implant may be forced to undergo revision surgery within six years of their original hip replacement surgery.

DePuy also manufactured metal-on-metal hip implants sold under the brand name Pinnacle hip with a metal liner (called the Ultamet metal liner). In many patients, the metal-on-metal version of the Pinnacle hip implant has failed.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has stated that there are “unique risks” for metal-on-metal artificial hips because tiny metal ions can wear off and damage nearby tissue. Patients who received all metal implants should be aware of symptoms of a defective metal hip implant. Common symptoms may include:

  • Pain in the groin, hip or leg
  • Swelling at or near the hip joint
  • A limp or change in walking ability

Complaints filed by patients Lieff Cabraser represent allege that the DePuy ASR hips and certain DePuy Pinnacle metal hip implants are defective and fail due to a design flaw for two principal reasons:

  1. The device slips or the shell does not sit in place in the hip and it resists bone growth.
  2. Friction within the metal hip implant (the cup and ball, or liner, components are made of metal) causes microscopic shavings and metal debris to be released into the surrounding tissue and blood. This can lead to a condition called metallosis, or an excessive exposure to metal, which is characterized by the painful, inflammatory reaction in the tissue and a high blood metal count.

For further information, read our answers to common questions on the DePuy hip recalls.

Contact Lieff Cabraser

If you or a family member are experiencing problems with your defective DePuy metal hip implant (the ASR or Pinnacle hip with the Ultamet (metal) liner) or have been told your artificial hip must be replaced, please contact an experienced Lieff Cabraser personal injury attorney or call us toll-free at 1 800 541-7358 and ask to speak to attorney Lexi J. Hazam.

We welcome the opportunity to review your claim. We represent DePuy hip implant patients, nationwide. We will respond promptly and there is no charge or obligation on your part to retain our firm as your attorney. Learn about our record of success representing patients nationwide in defective hip implant and medical device cases. Lieff Cabraser serves on the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committees in federal multidistrict court and California state court coordinated proceedings against DePuy.