DePuy Orthopaedics produces 200 products, but three of their products are causing the company to lose billions of dollars. The ASR XL System, Pinnacle Hip Replacement System and ASR Hip Resurfacing System were all designed to benefit the active lifestyle of younger people who had hip replacements by allowing increased range of motion and flexibility than other hip replacement products.
These products were intended to eliminate the problem of device failure as a result of overuse. The metal-on-metal construction was designed to improve failure rates; however, research has shown that this construction can create other problems.
Hip replacement systems featuring a metal-on-metal construction have problems with the way they are made, causing an increased failure rate, immobility, infection and dislocation. An increased risk for cancer is also possible. Some of the hip replacement systems have been recalled by DePuy, while others, including the Pinnacle system, are still available.
The Pinnacle Hip Replacement System
The Food and Drug Administration approved the Pinnacle system in 2000 and it has many options for bearing surfaces. They were designed this way so that the surgeon could select a model that is specific to each patient’s needs.
This metal-on-metal system caused patients to experience adverse reactions. The replacement hip created friction between the ball-shaped replacement head and cup of the thighbone. This resulted in the device eroding early and releasing metal ions into the body, which can have short-term and long-term effects.
The chromium and cobalt particles can cause joint inflammation over the short-term, causing difficulty moving and pain. Cobalt poisoning can occur over the long-term, causing cardiac and cognitive problems. Although these are known issues, the Pinnacle system has not been recalled by DePuy.
The ASR Hip Resurfacing System and ASR XL Acetabular System
The ASR Hip Resurfacing device and the ASR XL Acetabular device were involved in excess of 93,000 surgeries worldwide. The ASR XL device was available for use in the United States in 2005 and was designed to be used in total hip replacements. The ASR Hip Resurfacing device was designed for use in hip resurfacing, eliminating the need to remove the natural structure of the hip.
Both of these hip systems were acknowledged as faulty in August of 2010 as a result of an excessive number of device failures. Within five years of receiving these hip systems, 12 percent of people with the ASR resurfacing device and 13 percent of people with the ASR total hip replacement received a second hip replacement to fix the faulty device.
Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Complications
Examples of complications that people experienced after receiving a DePuy hip implant include:
- Metallosis (metal poisoning)
- Loosening of the implant inside the body
- Dislocation of the implant so that its pieces are no longer properly lined up
- Bone fracture near the implant site
These complications required a large number of patients to have a revision surgery. The main reason for these revision surgeries is the eroding of the ball and socket components.
DePuy ASR & Pinnacle Hip Implant Lawsuits
Although DePuy denies liability, hundreds of people who received a hip implant are taking legal action, claiming the products do not work properly. Johnson & Johnson has set aside two billion dollars for the DePuy hip replacement lawsuits.
Affected individuals can speak with a DePuy injury lawyer about how to file a claim, in addition to discussing possible compensation options.