Alleged DePuy Hip Implant Failures Lawsuits Update: Resource4thePeople Reports DePuy Orthopaedics Announces Halt to Sales of Metal Hip Implant Systems after Two Trials

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Despite announcement, new cases still being reviewed by national network of lawyers investigating allegations of dangerous side effects associated with nationwide recall of ASR metal-on-metal devices.

Resource4thePeople is informing consumers today that after two trials involving allegations that DePuy Orthopaedics metal-on-metal hip implants can cause serious side effects the company has decided it will no longer sell metal-on-metal hip implants.

DePuy's parent company, Johnson & Johnson, made the announcement May 17, 2013* after two trials in which one jury** awarded a plaintiff $8.3 million in damages and a second trial*** in which a jury found in favor of DePuy.

Bloomberg News reported* May 17, 2013 that company officials said the decision to halt sales was not caused by a massive 2010 recall of the company's ASR metal-on-metal hip systems or more than 10,000 lawsuits that have been filed over allegations that the systems were defectively designed.

Resource4thePeople also is announcing that despite the Johnson & Johnson decision to halt sales its national team of attorneys will continue to accept new cases over allegations that DePuy metal-on-metal hip implants caused serious side effects.

"The company's decision does not affect the legal rights of consumers to seek compensation for side effects that they allege were caused by metal-on-metal hip implant systems that are the subject of a huge multi-district litigation**** that is still underway," said Resource4thePeople.

"We have been receiving numerous inquiries from consumers about whether the deadline for them to seek a free legal consultation about their allegations has passed.

"The answer to that question is no and anyone who had an ASR metal system implanted is encouraged to contact us as soon as possible for an evaluation of their legal options."

In its posting, Bloomberg reported that "metal-on-metal hip sales in the U.S. and Europe plunged from 20 percent of the market in 2007 to less than 2 percent last year as doctors questioned their safety and patients filed lawsuits citing flawed products. The global hip-implant market may be $5.7 billion in 2013, according to Lawrence Biegelsen, an analyst at Wells Fargo in New York. U.S. regulators earlier this year requested extensive study of all metal-on-metal hips."

In the first U.S. trial** involving the DePuy metal systems allegations, a Los Angeles jury found on March 8, 2013 that DePuy and its parent company, Johnson & Johnson must pay a Montana man $8.3 in damages on a finding that the DePuy ASR system was defectively designed.

Jurors awarded damages to Loren Kransky, a 65-year-old former prison guard who claimed he suffered serious health problems after an ASR system failed and metal debris was spread through his body, according to the court file.

Kransky had an ASR hip implanted in 2007 and was forced to have it replaced in 2012 after suffering pain and infections from the metal infecting his blood and nearby tissues, according to the court file.

In their court filings, Kransky’s lawyers filed allegations that DePuy was negligent because their research staff did not use a variety of angulations in testing the ASR metal cup and only tested one of several sizes.

Then, a Chicago jury*** returned a verdict in favor of DePuy Orthopaedics and against a woman who claimed DePuy metal-on-metal hip implant systems were defectively designed and that the company failed to warn patients of serious side effects that could be caused by the devices.

The Chicago trial involved allegations filed by Carol Strum, a 54-year-old Illinois nurse, who sought damages over her claims that an ASR hip system manufactured by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy was defectively designed.

Strum’s lawyer told jurors that the metal-on-metal hip implant failed after three years and she had to undergo replace surgery because DePuy failed to warn of the risks of the ASR, which J&J recalled in August 2010, according to an April 16, 2013 Bloomberg News report.*****

Bloomberg reported that her lawyer told jurors that the ASR design flaws caused it to shed chromium and metal debris into surrounding tissue.

The lawyer said that surgeons implanted a metal cup in the hip and a metal ball atop the femur that rotated inside the cup and that DePuy claimed its design would last longer than other products, according to the report.

"Each metal-on-metal hip implant trial involves unique sets of facts and different juries returned different verdicts," said Resource4thePeople. "There are still thousands of cases in this litigation in which victims are waiting to present their claims before a jury and we will continue to monitor these results for consumers."

“Bloomberg also reported on April 16 that Johnson and Johnson recalled the ASR implants in August 2010 after 93,000 were sold, when it said 12 percent failed within five years.

"Data last year showed 44 percent failed in Australia within seven years." said Bloomberg. "Analysts have said the cases could cost J&J billions of dollars."

Resource4thePeople also notes that Johnson & Johnson has initiated another recall of a second model of a metal hip component sold outside the United States.”

That recall was the subject of a Reuters News Service article that said that “J&J's DePuy unit told doctors in January that the Adept modular heads, a component used with its Adept metal-on-metal hip replacement device, should not be used after data showed that the devices were failing at a higher than expected rate, according to an emailed statement.”******

Reuters also reported in the article that Johnson & Johnson has reported to investors that it is reserving “more than $3 billion to cover costs for the ASR hip recall.”

**Kransky v. DePuy, BC456086, California Superior Court, Los Angeles County (Los Angeles).
***Strum v. DePuy, 2011-L-9352, Circuit Court of Cook County, Chicago, Illinois.
****In re: DePuy Orthopaedics Inc., ASR Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation, MDL-2197, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio

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