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Jury Finds in Favor of J&J in Second Bellwether Hip Implant Case

Written by Ankin Law Office

More than 10,000 lawsuits are currently pending against Johnson & Johnson in connection with its all-metal DePuy Articular Surface Replacement, or A.S.R., hip implant systems. The first of these lawsuits have just started going to trial. These first trials – which are often called bellwether cases – are used by both plaintiffs and defendants to predict the outcome of future trials.

While the first trial resulted in an $8.3 million verdict in favor of a Montana man who was injured by one of DePuy’s hip implant systems, the second trial ended with a Chicago jury rejecting plaintiff’s claims against the hip implant manufacturer.

It is unclear why the two juries reached different conclusions, particularly given that internal company documents of Johnson & Johnson revealed that an analysis conducted by the company in 2011 estimated that the all-metal hip implants would fail within five years in nearly 40 percent of patients who received it.

According to the New York Times, some lawyers and industry analysts have estimated that the DePuy hip implant lawsuits could ultimately cost Johnson & Johnson billions of dollars. Thousands of the individual cases have already been consolidated into a large multidistrict litigation (MDL) in a Federal District Court in Ohio and the resolution of that action could determine the outcome for other DePuy hip implant lawsuits.

The DePuy ASR hip implant is an all-metal hip implant that was recalled in 2010 due to higher-than-normal failure rates associated with the devices and amidst several complaints from patients who 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.

According to this New York Times article, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) received more than 5,000 complaints between January and August 2011 about several metal-on-metal hips, which is more complaints than the FDA had received about metal-on-metal hip implants in the previous four years combined, with the DePuy ASR hip implant systems accounting for 75 percent of the complaints reviewed by the New York Times.

Reuters reports that earlier this year, the FDA called on all-metal hip implant manufacturers to provide additional information regarding their safety and efficacy before they are allowed to sell the metal hip implants.

The Chicago unsafe pharmaceutical attorneys at Ankin Law Offices, LLC are committed to protecting the public from dangerous pharmaceuticals and defective medical devices, like the recalled DePuy and Stryker hip implants. If you have been injured by the Depuy hip implant, Stryker hip implant, or other medical device, contact the skilled Chicago hip implant law firm of Ankin Law Offices, LLC at (312) 600-0000 to discuss a possible personal injury or product liability lawsuit.

Categories: Product Liability