Zimmer Durom Cup Lawsuit Filed Over Loosened Hip Replacement

A Zimmer Durom Cup lawsuit has been filed by a Texas man who alleges that his hip replacement implant was defectively designed and did not bond to bone as it should. 

The product liability lawsuit was filed on March 10 by Victor Barakat in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas. According to a report in the Southeast Texas Record, Barakat experienced pain for three years because of a loosened Zimmer Durom cup hip replacement, which was surgically removed in April 2009.

Barakat’s lawsuit is the latest of dozens of Durom Cup hip replacement lawsuits filed against Zimmer throughout the United States, since the manufacturer issued a temporary Durom Cup recall in July 2008.

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Sales of the artificial hip implant were suspended until revisions could be made to the warning label and so that additional training could be developed for surgeons about the special surgical techniques needed to reduce the risk of problems after hip replacement surgery.

The Zimmer Durom Cup was first introduced in the United States in 2006, as a more advanced form of an artificial hip. The hip resurfacing system is designed out of a single piece of material and is designed to avoid problems associated with traditional hip replacement components, such as instability, limited range of motion and wear of the bearing.

However, after it was introduced in the United States, concerns emerged about a high number of hip replacement failures involving the Durom Cup, where the component loosened and required revision surgery.

Barakat said his cup was one of those that became loose, resulting in pain and discomfort. Barakat’s complaint alleges that the cup was supposed to allow bone to grow through the porous shell, cementing it into place. But instead, the cup came loose instead of joining with the bone.

Approximately 12,000 patients had the Zimmer Durom Cup system implanted between 2006 and 2008, before the product was temporarily recalled. According to Zimmer’s own estimates, some doctors have experienced failure rates as high as 5.7%, and experts have suggested that the rate of hip replacement cup loosenings could increase as time passes after the surgery.

Barakat’s lawsuit accuses the company of designing a defective device that did not meet FDA medical device specifications and guidelines. The lawsuit includes charges of failure to warn, design defect, negligence and breach of warranty. The lawsuit seeks both compensatory damages for Barakat and is also seeking punitive damages against Zimmer as well.

In recent months, concerns have emerged about similar problems associated with a different type of implant, known as metal-on-metal hip implants. Earlier this month, DePuy Orthopaedics, a division of Johnson & Johnson, announced that it was removing its DePuy ASR hip replacement system from the market. While the company initially claimed the removal was due to low sales, on March 6 they sent a letter warning doctors that many patients have experienced hip failures soon after the devices were implanted.


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