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As a growing number of Stryker LFit V40 hip cases continue to be filed throughout the federal court system, the U.S. District Judge presiding over the litigation has ordered that Fact Sheets be submitted by each plaintiff, providing case-specific details about problems they have experienced after receiving the recalled hip components.
The Stryker LFit v40 is a femoral head used in several hip replacement systems, which was removed from the market last year amid a higher-than-expected number of reports involving hip complications and failures, including taper lock probems with the cobalt-chromium femoral head that may result in pain, inflammation, loss of mobility, disassociation and the need for risky revision surgery.
Given similar questions of fact and law raised in cases filed nationwide, all hip replacement lawsuits involving issues with the Stryker LFit v30 have been centralized before U.S. District Judge Indira Talwani in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, as part of an MDL or multidistrict litigation.
While each of the Stryker LFit v40 hip cases involve common allegations that the manufacturer failed to adequately design and manufacture the implants, and failed to warn consumers and the medical community about the risk oof implant problems, Judge Indira Talwani has set forth the procedures regarding the creation of both Plaintiff and Defense fact sheets to standardize the collection of case-specific information on each claim in a Fact Sheet Implementation Order (PDF) issued on November 13.
For all currently filed cases, Plaintiff Fact Sheets must be submitted no later than 60 days after the order was issued. For future lawsuits, plaintiffs will have 60 days after their case is transferred to the Stryker LFit MDL to submit a fact sheet.
Defendants Fact Sheets on each plaintiff’s case will be due 90 days after the filing of the initial order, or after they have been transferred or directly filed to the MDL.
If Stryker LFit hip settlements are not reached following the discovery process, the Court indicates that the first bellwether trial will commence on September 16, 2019.
While the outcome of such bellwether trials are not binding on other plaintiffs, they are closely watched in complex product liability litigation, where large numbers of cases raise similar allegations and injury claims.
Similar centralized proceedings were previously established in the federal court system following a 2012 Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II recall, which resulted in thousands of lawsuits brought by individuals nationwide. Following coordinated discovery in that litigation, the manufacturer agreed to pay more than $1 billion in hip implant settlements to resolve cases for individuals who required revision surgery after these recalled implant failed.