Stryker Hip Joint Recall Lawyer in Wilmington
Compensation for Hip Implant Injuries
A new August 2016 Stryker Hip Recall has been implemented by Stryker Orthopedics, a leading manufacturer of artificial hip joints. This recall deals with V40 Femoral Heads and V40 tapers, which are linked to corrosion, fretting and device failure. Stryker safety notification warned that some of their metal V40 femoral heads are causing premature revision surgeries.
Hip replacement surgery is a painful procedure, one that requires substantial recovery time and extensive physical therapy. Having been through it once, the thought of dealing with a product recall and having to go through it again, well its simply horrendous. This is especially discouraging for those who live active lifestyles. Stryker promoted the V40 heads and tapers as providing a greater range of motion, improved stability and reduced wear. Thus, the option was often used with young, more active patients.
Unfortunately, when dealing with this defect, you must face the problem head on.
Are You At Risk?
The first thing you need to know is whether you had one of the defective hips implanted in your body. Our experts do not believe that the recall captures the entire problem of implants. If you have had a hip implant surgery, it is important to determine what components were used because you now must face the possibility that a harmful implant is contained within your body.
Please know, however, that you may get financial help when dealing with this nightmare. If you have received a defective hip joint, you may be entitled compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, medical bills, mental trauma, emotional duress, and much more. But taking on a Fortune 500 company like Stryker Corporation is no easy task.
To get a fair settlement, it is vital that you have the representation of a defective medical device attorney. The legal team at Wilmington’s Rhine Law Firm, P.C. has been successfully recovering losses from large manufacturers for nearly three decades and will put its experience behind your claim. Call (866) 772-9060 today for a free consultation.
Which Stryker Products Are a Problem?
Specifically, the defect is in Stryker’s V40 metal heads and tapers, which were used in Stryker’s Accolade, Citation, Meridian, Exeter, Reliance Definition and Restoration systems. Most often this defect deals with the Accolade system, which has a TMZF titanium stem. Stryker’s Accolade System has both a metal head and ceramic head option. The V40 heads have also been used with the Stryker’s Rejuvenate and Stryker ABG II stems, which were recalled in July 2012 due to a modularity problem at the neck-stem junction causing corrosion and wear debris and leading to a host of issues and many revision surgeries.
Why Are These Products Dangerous?
Again, this situation deals with the LFIT Metal V40 Femoral Heads and L40 tapers which, in the Accolade System, have interlocking dissimilar materials that create a big problem. Basically, the taper junction is a combination of dissimilar metals (TMZF titanium and cobalt chromium). The taper is the proximal or upper portion of the neck that locks with the head (Stryker calls this the V40 taper). The system comes with a metal head option called the V40 Femoral Head, which is made of cobalt chromium.
This combination causes "fretting" or wear. This eventually leads to corrosion of the artificial joint, releasing the metal ions cobalt and chromium into the body. These metal particles are absorbed into the blood and surrounding tissue, provoking an immunological response known as metallosis, or metal poisoning. Metallosis can lead to a host of neurological issues, including brain damage.
Symptoms of a Defective Hip Replacement
All types of hip implants are subject to certain side effects, such as infection, bone loss and joint dislocation; however, metal-on-metal implants pose additional risk for serious injury due to the degeneration of the metal parts. These issues usually result in a variety of symptoms, including pain, swelling, rash, clucking/popping, dislocation of the stem and head and sometimes fractures ads well. Exposure to metal has also been known to cause the following:
- Impaired kidney function
- Skins rashes and irritations
- Thyroid problems, such as weight and fatigue
- Cardiomyopathy (enlarging of the heart muscle)
- Neurological problems
- Depression and other cognitive or psychological issues
Unfortunately, symptoms of metallosis may not be noticeable until after the damage has already been done. On top of that, X-rays may not indicate that there has been fretting of the joint, so blood work or an MRI may be required to determine whether you have an existing problem and the severity of the damage.
Grounds for a Hip Replacement Lawsuit
If you have been injured by a defective product, you may have grounds for a lawsuit if Stryker, the manufacturer:
- Failed to adequately test the devices.
- Deceptively marketed the devices as superior to other hip implants on the market.
- Failed to adequately warn physicians and patients about the dangers of these devices.
- Knew, or should have known, that the devices were inherently more dangerous than other hip implants on the market, due to the risk of metal poisoning and an increased need for additional surgeries.
What Kind of Damages Can You Claim?
Having a dangerous, defective device installed in your body can detrimentally affect your life in numerous ways. Therefore, you have the right to ask for compensation for not only medical bills, physical therapy and rehabilitation costs, and pain and suffering, but also permanent injury or disability that can lead to diminished earning capacity – on top of the lost wages you’ve already suffered from missing work. Factor in punitive damages and there’s a lot on the line when it comes to injures suffered from dangerous medical devices like Stryker hip replacements.
What to Expect When You Call an Attorney
When you call the Rhine Law Firm, P.C. we will want to discuss the following. Most of our clients don’t have all of this information, and if we accept your case, we will perform an investigation concerning the following:
- What is your residence now and what was your residence at the time of the implant? (This will impact the number of claims you can assert and, more importantly, how quickly you need to file the claim under statutes of limitation and repose.)
- What was the model of the stem? Was it Accolade, Meridian, Citation, Rejuvenate, ABG III, etc.? Again, many professionals believe the problem is not limited to the recalled devices or lots.
- Did you receive a recall notice from your surgeon?
- When and where was the device implanted?
- Who were your medical providers?
- Did you have a serum blood test for Cobalt Chromium and Titanium (Co/Cr/Ti)?
- Have you had a MARS MRI, where your doctors were looking for pockets of fluid, called pseudo-tumors?
- What are your symptoms?
- Have you had a revision surgery?
- Did you have any complications in your post revision surgery?
Additionally, we will ask for you to give us permission to obtain certain forms and reports that will help us identify whether you have the defective implants. It is vital that you contact a North Carolina hip recall lawyer as soon as possible to ensure you can file within the limitation period. Failure to do so will prevent you from recovering regardless of the strength of your case or the amount of your damages if, under the law, you have “slept on your rights” and failed to file a lawsuit within the short period allowed.
Manufacturers of medical devices have a grave responsibility to make sure that the products they sell us to save or improve our lives are not, in fact, harmful to us. As a consumer, you have no other recourse but to take legal action when manufacturers violate their responsibility to make safe products. The Rhine Law Firm, P.C. is here to help you take that legal action. Call our offices at (866) 772-9060 for a free case evaluation.
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