Metal-on-Metal Hip Lawsuit Filed Against Johnson & Johnson and DePuy

  • Written by: Staff Writers

A New York woman has filed a metal-on-metal hip replacement lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary, DePuy Orthopaedics, alleging that a DePuy ASR hip implant she received was defective and failed, causing her to suffer painful and debilitating injuries. 

The lawsuit was filed earlier this month by Annie O’Neill, 67, of Gardiner, New York, in federal court in California. The complaint alleges that Johnson & Johnson and DePuy failed to warn patients about the risk of problems with metal-on-metal ASR hip replacements and failed to promptly issue a recall once it became clear that a large number of the implants were failing shortly after surgery.

O’Neill received a DePuy ASR hip in May 2009, but the implant detached from her acetabulum over the following months and caused her severe pain and problems walking. Eventually, the implant began emitting noise from her hip when she walked, which continually grew louder. Between the pain and the noise from the defective implant, it was decided that O’Neill should undergo hip revision surgery on July 26, 2010.

According to the complaint, O’Neill is a nature enthusiast who enjoyed hiking and rock climbing, but even after surgery to fix the DePuy ASR implant problems she continues to have trouble walking.

In August, a month after O’Neill’s hip revision surgery, Johnson & Johnson and DePuy recalled the ASR XL Acetabular Systems, saying that the metal-on-metal hip implant had a 13% failure rate. They also recalled the ASR Hip Resurfacing System, which had a 12% failure rate. About 93,000 of the artificial hip systems were sold prior to the recall.

A growing number of individuals throughout the United States have filed a similar DePuy ASR metal hip lawsuit after they experienced problems from the defective implant. This week, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation is scheduled to meet to determine whether the DePuy ASR hip replacement litigation should be consolidated in federal court for pretrial proceedings.

All of the claims involve similar allegations of design defect, which caused the plaintiffs to incur additional medical expenses, suffer pain and, in some cases, require additional surgery to revise or replace the hip implant. The complaints allege that DePuy failed to adequately test the metal-on-metal hip system and failed to immediately issue a recall when it became apparent that that the DePuy ASR was linked to a high failure rate.

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  1. Donald Reply

    I had a hip replacement, metal on metal, DePuy KA11 stem, Pinnacle 100 acetabular cup etc and it is failing. My surgery was 12/1/09. My surgeon used the anterior approach. He has since left the practice. Now, the senior guy in the practice says I need a replacement, not metal on metal and he would use the posterior approach and cut muscle. Who is the best orthopedic guy in the country to fix this problem?

  2. Monika Reply

    I had revision surgery on Jan 7/13 after a long year of pain and suffering. I was walking with much difficulty, swaying from side to side and could only walk short distances ie. a few houses down the street. The original total hip replacement was done April 6 2009. I could not understand what was happening until I received notification from a lawyer. At that time I contacted my surgeon, although it should have been much sooner! I don’t recall having cobalt and chromium levels done but I did have xrays and ultrasound. I was then instructed to return in another six months, which I did. It was decided at that time that I needed the revision. I am now recuperating at home after discharge from a rehab. My walking is much improved although I still need to use my cane and be aware of all the precautions. I am not driving as yet. I look forward to having the ability to participate more in activities which require walking. I am registered with a lawyer at the present time and have not heard anything back as yet except for the fact that they have my Depuy ASR joint in a forensic lab for safekeeping. There is a class action lawsuit going on and I was told that a court date was set for Feb. 6. It is now Feb. 9 . I am relieved to have the surgery overwith, but also worry about the loss of wages in the meanwhile. I hope they get things settled quickly.

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