Depuy Products Liability $502M Award

Orthopedic surgery experts testified in the products liability lawsuit over Johnson & Johnson’s Depuy artificial hip. The medical device manufacturer was ordered to pay $502M to five patients who accused J&J of hiding flaws in the Depuy Pinnacle product. Plaintiffs complained of implant loosening, extreme pain, shedding of metallic debris inside the body, and intense soft tissue damage. Some patients were subjected to revision surgery to remove the implant. writes:

While a number of DePuy products have been successful, the company faces consumer complaints from patients who received ASR and Pinnacle hip replacements. Thousands of patients experienced problems with pain and swelling. Some implants caused severe nerve, muscle, and bone damage. Blood poisoning has also been reported, due to the material from the metal-on-metal implants. Over time, these components can rub together and corrode into the patients’ bodies. This can cause metallosis, osteolysis and other serious health complications.

Orthopedic surgeons diagnose and treat diseases and injuries of the musculoskeletal system. They are experts in the treatment of bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves with surgery and corrective mechanical devices. Litigation in orthopedic surgery typically stems from medical complications as well as poor surgical outcomes resulting in a loss of function. The highly skilled orthopedic surgery expert witness is critical in product liability cases involving medical devices such as the ASR and Pinnacle hip replacements.

Judge Ed Kinkeade presided over the Northern District of Texas case, IN RE: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation 3:11-md-02244.

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