The first bellwether trials have been set in connection with the litigation surrounding the defective DePuy hip implants. Judge David Katz of the U.S. District Court, District of Northern Ohio has scheduled the first bellwether trials in the DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc. ASR Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation(MDL No. 2197) for May 6, 2013 and July 8, 2013.
What Is a Bellwether Trial?
Bellwether trials are the first trials to take place in a multi-district litigation (MDL). MDL is the consolidation of several similar lawsuits for the purpose of discovery and pretrial motions, but, unlike class actions, the plaintiffs maintain their individual claims against the defendant rather than a collective claim. Bellwether trials often influence future trials and they can be used to predict how other juries will likely rule on certain issues. If a plaintiff is successful in the bellwether trials, a mass settlement of similar claims is much more likely.
DePuy Orthopaedics Hip Implant Recall
In 2010, two hip replacement systems manufactured by DePuy Orthopedics (a division of Johnson & Johnson) – the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System and the ASR Hip Resurfacing System –were recalled due to a higher-than-normal failure rates associated with the devices and complaints that many patients were experiencing serious side effects from the hip replacement systems. Many doctors believe that the cup of the DePuy ASR him implant was too shallow, which led to improper implantation and other health complications, including the release of potentially dangerous levels of chromium and cobalt into the body.
Problems with DePuy Hip Implants
The recalled DePuy ASR hip replacement systems have been used in more than 93,000 hip replacements since they were approved. In the past two years, the FDA has received more than 300 complaints regarding the devices, including loose hip cups, hip dislocations, bone fractures, pseudotumors from metal debris, allergic reactions and permanent muscle and tissue damage. Data has shown that in the five years following implantation of the ASR Hip System, 12% of patients who received the ASR resurfacing device, and 13% of patients who received the ASR total replacement system, have required a subsequent hip revision surgery to correct the medical problems caused by the ASR system.
According to Reuters, government data shows that a total of 500,000 patients in the United States have received metal-on-metal hip implants, with an estimated 150,000 receiving the Pinnacle hip implant and 37,000 receiving the ASR implant.
What to Do If You Have Received a Recalled Hip Implant
If you received one of the DePuy hip implants – either the ASR system or the Pinnacle implant – or a Stryker hip implant, which was recently recalled, you should consult with an experienced attorney regarding possible rights to compensation for injuries you have suffered, including medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The Chicago hip implant attorneys at Ankin Law Offices, LLC are dedicated to protecting the rights of victims who have suffered medical problems associated with the defective him replacement implants. Contact the Chicago product liability lawyers at Ankin Law Offices, LLC at (312) 600-0000 to learn more about the Stryker hip implant recall, the DePuy ASR hip implant recall, or the Pinnacle hip implant.