Johnson & Johnson recently announced that it will begin phasing out the production of metal-on-metal and ceramic-on-metal hip replacement products manufactured by their DePuy Orthopaedics division. The world’s leading manufacturer of healthcare products also stated that it will cease selling DePuy’s all-metal hip implants effective August 31, 2013.
This news appears to be the latest evidence of an industry-wide shift away from metal-on-metal hip replacement models. According to a report published by Bloomberg News, sales of all-metal hip implants plunged from 20 percent in 2007 to less than 2 percent in 2012. Many reporters speculate that this decline is due, at least in part, to the recent influx of lawsuits from DePuy all-metal hip replacement patients and physicians’ subsequent reluctance to utilize all-metal hip replacement products, as documented in a recent article by The New York Times.
In fact, the metal-on-metal DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System and its ASR Hip Resurfacing System were both recalled in 2010, following a wave of lawsuits claiming that patients’ faulty hip implants led to extensive personal injury and, in some cases, required painful, expensive, and complicated revision surgeries.
At the time of this recall, metal-on-metal hip implants comprised an estimated one-third of all hip replacements performed in the United States.
During the first trial brought to court against Johnson & Johnson and DePuy Orthopaedics, it was revealed that the DePuy ASR had a 40 percent fail rate within the first five years for hip replacement patients. This rate is roughly eight times higher than the fail rate of a typical hip implant, which is designed to last between 15 and 20 years.
Today, Johnson & Johnson is facing more than 10,000 lawsuits related to a defective design of the DePuy ASR all-metal implant, with additional lawsuits being filed each day. Despite the rising number of lawsuits filed for this recalled product, a spokesperson for Johnson & Johnson says that the decision to stop selling all-metal hip replacement products is not related to safety or effectiveness, but that the market is simply no longer viable for these products.
If you or someone you know was implanted with a DePuy ASR hip replacement product and suffered severe tissue and bone damage or had to undergo costly and painful revision surgery, you may still be eligible for compensation. Contact a DePuy hip recall attorney at Ward Black Law in Greensboro, NC, today! We are standing by to answer your questions and provide free, no-obligation case evaluations! You can reach us by phone: (336) 333-2244 or toll-free at 1-877-256-1214 and by email, or you can visit us on our website: wardblacklaw.com.