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A Los Angeles jury has awarded $9.2 million to a man who experienced problems with a Zimmer Durom Cup hip replacement system, which is the first verdict out of several hundred cases pending over the hip implant.
The Zimmer Durom Cup is an artificial hip replacement system that was first introduced in the United States in 2006, with a design that was supposed to avoid many problems associated with traditional hip replacement components, such as instability, limited range of motion and wear of the bearing. However, shortly after it was introduced, concerns emerged about a high number of hip replacement failures, where the component loosened and required revision surgery.
A temporary Zimmer Durom Cup recall was issued in July 2008, so that revisions could be made to the product’s warnings and instructions to ensure that doctors were properly trained on the surgical techniques needed to implant the artificial hip correctly.
The verdict came in a lawsuit brought by Gary Kline, 59, who experienced problems after receiving the Durom implant.
Following a three week trial and three and a half hours of deliberations, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury awarded Kline $6.4 million for future noneconomic damages, $2.6 million for past noneconomic damages and $153,000 for medical costs, finding that Zimmer was guilty of failure to warn and negligent design of a defective product.
Approximately 12,000 individuals had the Zimmer Durom Cup hip system implanted between 2006 and 2008. While Zimmer’s own estimates in 2008 suggested that some doctors experienced failure rates as high as 5.7%, some claims have suggested that the between 20% and 30% of people may experience premature problems with the implant.
Most of the Zimmer Durom Cup litigation is pending in the federal court system, were at least 300 cases are currently consolidated as part of an MDL, or Multidistrict Litigation, which is centralized in the District of New Jersey.