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DePuy Hip Implant Personal Injury Lawsuit Sees First Round of Testimonies

Testimony in DePuy Hip Implant Personal Injury Lawsuit Indicates All-Metal Hips are Dangerous

The first bellwether case in the DePuy hip implant MDL against the ASR model is going forward. The plaintiff is Loren Kransky, a Vietnam veteran who received one of DePuy’s ASR model hip implants in 2005. Since then, he has suffered several common but dangerous side effects from the device’s failure, including metallosis. Because of his poor health, Judge Richard A. Kramer scheduled Kransky as the first bellwether trial in the MDL.

As the lawsuit moves forward, witnesses are being called to testify about DePuy’s hip implant model ASR.

Various Testimony Indicates that DePuy’s Hip Implants Caused Personal Injury

On Friday, February 1st, Dr. Robert Harrison, a toxicologist, testified to the harm cobalt and chromium can do when they seep into a patient’s blood stream. These two metals are the most common found in the blood of patients with all-metal hip implants, due to the cup and socket parts of the device grinding together and releasing metal shavings into the bloodstream.

Harrison reviewed Kransky’s medical records, and testified that there were high levels of metal ions in the plaintiff’s blood. He said the levels were “seven or eight times the level set by the California Poison Control department.”

According to Harrison during his testimony, metallosis poses two major dangers: “local damage,” or damage around the tissue, and “systemic” damage, which includes organ failure due to a toxic increase in metal ions.

Harrison added that the medical community has known about the dangers of metal implants causing metal poisoning since the 1970’s.

In further testimony, a compliance manager from DePuy, Jimmy Smith, said that J&J’s engineering report from 2010 showed that executives and designers “ did their job, but they could have done it better.”

Also on Thursday, January 31st, a DePuy engineer, Graham Isaac, testified that the company only tested the ASR all-metal hip replacement device at one angle. This meant that any other angle of implantation, which surgeons would have adjusted for different-sized patients, would cause the device to grind against itself in such a way that the implant would fail quickly, and release metal pieces into the blood stream, potentially causing metallosis.

Finally, on Wednesday, January 30th, company executive Andrew Ekdahl’s videotaped testimony was shown to the court. When pressed for comment on why DePuy’s ASR hip replacement device had been recalled, Ekdahl answered “because it did not meet the clinical standards we wanted in the marketplace.”

DePuy Orthopedics continues to deny any wrongdoing.

The Strom Law Firm Can Help with DePuy ASR and Pinnacle Metal Hip Replacement Injury Lawsuits

The metal hip replacement devices manufactured by DePuy are dangerous. The FDA said: “It is known that over time, the metal particles around some implants can cause damage to bone and/or tissue surrounding the implant and joint.” In addition, the FDA adds that there are a “small number of patients in which high levels of metal ions in the bloodstream may have caused other types of symptoms or illnesses elsewhere in the body, including effects on the heart, nervous system, and thyroid gland.”

In August 2010, DePuy recalled a number of their metal hip replacement devices.  Currently, the DePuy Pinnacle Acetabular Cup System has not been made a part of that recall.

If you or a loved one has received a metal hip replacement device, specifically from DePuy Orthopedics, and have since suffered painful side effects, you may be entitled to compensation. The attorneys at the Strom Law Firm can help. We offer free, confidential consultations to discuss the facts of your case, so do not hesitate to contact us. 803.252.4800.



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