Lawyers for Defective Artificial Hips
Millions of Americans suffer from degenerative conditions or injuries to their hips which make walking, standing, and even sitting difficult and painful. Hip replacement surgeries offer patients the promise of a better tomorrow, making basic mobility possible again. Unfortunately, some medical manufacturers have profited from hip replacement devices that have been found to be faulty or defective.
If you received an artificial hip and are now experiencing significant side effects or complications, you may be entitled to compensation from the manufacturer. Many types of artificial hips have been found to cause serious injuries and medical conditions and are not safe for use in the human body. To find out if you can seek compensation for your situation, contact the experienced defective medical device lawyers at Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP. We can review your case and help you seek the justice and compensation you deserve.
Companies shouldn’t be rewarded with outrageous profits for disregarding the safety of the public. Contact us today at (205) 324-1212 to talk about how we can help. Your initial case evaluation is free and confidential.
Facts About Hip Replacement Surgery and Artificial Hips
The hip is one of the largest joints in the human body. It is considered a ball and socket joint, as opposed to a hinge joint like an elbow or a knee. The head of the longest bone in the body, the femur, is rounded and fits into the socket of the pelvic bone. The surface of the femoral head and the socket are covered in cartilage, a soft tissue that cushions the ends of the bones and enables them to glide and move smoothly.
The hip joint provides a wide range of motion and impacts how a person sits, stands, walks, and runs. In a healthy hip joint, the cartilage prevents the ends of the bones from rubbing together, which can cause tremendous pain and limit an individual’s range of motion.
A hip replacement is a surgical procedure wherein a damaged or disabled hip joint is removed and replaced with an artificial device. The bones of the pelvic socket and the femoral head may need to be removed or re-shaped depending on the amount of damage and the type of implant being inserted. Most artificial hip joints are made from metal alloys and medical-grade plastic components.
The most common medical conditions that eventually lead to a hip replacement include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and other arthritic conditions. Arthritis can degrade the joint and the surrounding cartilage to the point where walking or even putting pressure on the joint can cause debilitating pain and stiffness, limiting a person’s activity. Serious or repeated sports injuries, childhood hip disease, and dislocations or fractures of the hip joint may also require a hip replacement.
While hip replacement surgery may be a necessity for those with pain and limited range of motion, it is not without risks. There is always the possibility of infection, blood clots, dislocation, nerve damage, and a discrepancy in leg length after the procedure. Many of these side effects can be mitigated by following the physician’s post-operative instructions and giving the body an adequate chance to heal.
Problems Associated with Artificial Hips
While introducing any type of foreign object into the body carries risks, serious side effects and complications hit patients with metal-on-metal hip implants particularly hard. Several manufacturers had touted the metal-on-metal hip implant design because they claimed it would increase a patient’s mobility.
However, subsequent studies conducted on metal-on-metal hip implants found disturbing evidence that these types of implants could lead to serious metallosis, a rare and potentially fatal medical condition caused by the build of metallic debris inside the soft tissues of the body. One of these studies found that metal-on-metal hip implants could release between 5 to 250 million metal particles into the body with each step.
In addition to metallosis, debris from the wear of the hip implant can also cause osteolysis. Osteolysis occurs when debris accumulates in the soft tissue of the surrounding joint, which triggers an inflammatory response. This inflammation can destroy the remaining bone and eventually loosen the hip implant.
Many of these types of implants were also given a 20-year lifespan, reducing the need for frequent follow-up surgeries or replacements. However, the wear and tear, particle shedding, and design defects in many types of hip implant devices meant a significantly short lifespan for the implants. The problems associated with these types of devices grew so concerning that the FDA warned orthopedic surgeons to take precautions when using certain types of hip implants in order to try to mitigate the situation.
Some of the reported complications and side effects of hip implant devices include:
- Periprosthetic fractures or bone fractures at the site of the implant
- Loosening of the implant
- Allergic reactions
- Early implant failure
These complications and side effects can jeopardize the stability of the artificial joint as well as an individual’s health in general. These side effects can also lead to unexpected and unplanned corrective surgeries. The medical costs associated with these complications can also put an individual’s financial stability in jeopardy as well.
Manufacturers of Artificial Hips
Several different manufacturers are responsible for designing, manufacturing, and distributing hip implant devices in the U.S. Reviewing your medical records or talking with your doctor is the best way to find out which specific make and model of hip implant you have and if you are at risk of suffering complications.
If you suspect that your artificial hip implant may be defective or is causing you problems, an attorney at Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP can review your case to see if you may be owed compensation for your injuries. Manufacturers that have received complaints about the safety and effectiveness of their hip implant devices include:
- DePuy Synthes Orthopedics
- Smith & Nephew, Inc.
- Wright Medical Group
- Zimmer Biomet
Artificial Hip Recalls
Due to the complaints and studies that linked some types of hip implants with serious complications and side effects, many manufacturers were finally forced to issue recalls on some of their devices. A recall can be done voluntarily, or it can be mandated by the FDA. In many cases, companies opted to voluntarily recall faulty and defective hip implant devices.
Implants were recalled for a variety of reasons, the most predominant being:
- Design flaws
- Implant failure
- Instruction problems
- Missing components
- Fractured implants
- Early implant degradation
The companies most notable for their hip implant recalls over the years include:
- ASR XL Acetabular Hip System
- ASR Hip Resurfacing System
- R3 Acetabular Hip System
- Modular SMF Hip System
- Modular Redapt Femoral Hip System
- Rejuvenate modular necks and stems
- ABG II modular necks and stems
- Conserve Plus
- Profemur Z Hip System
- Durom Acetabular Components
Unfortunately, there is no large-scale database or network that can inform all patients that they have been implanted with a faulty or defective device on the recall list. In fact, many patients never realize that their specific implant is impacted by a company-wide recall. Too often, victims only find out there is a problem when they notice serious side effects and complications.
Compensation for Hip Replacement Issues
Determining compensation for injuries associated with a defective implant can be complicated. The severity of the complication, the medical bills, and the emotional distress inflicted on a victim are all factors that must be weighed. Every case is different, and at Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP, we carefully review each client’s case to determine how much compensation a victim may be entitled to.
Manufacturers have a responsibility to provide the public with safe products. When they fail or are negligent in that duty, they can be held financially responsible. However, it takes an aggressive and dedicated legal team to fight back against these medical giants to ensure that victims get the money they deserve.
If you’ve suffered serious side effects from a hip replacement implant, you may be entitled to recover compensation for the following:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
Contact an Experienced Attorney Today
There are time limits in place for filing a lawsuit against negligent manufacturers. For victims seriously injured by a manufacturer’s negligence, time is crucial. If you have suffered injury or complications from an artificial hip implant, you need immediate legal representation.
At Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP, we aggressively help victims seek the compensation they deserve from the companies that injured them. Our team is extremely experienced and won’t back down when faced with push-back from multi-million-dollar medical manufacturers. Profits should never be put ahead of safety. We get that message across by holding these companies accountable on behalf of the victims we represent.
If you want more information about how the legal team at Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP can help you seek the justice you deserve, contact us today at (205) 324-1212. We will set you up with a free and confidential case evaluation to discuss your situation.