Searcy Denney Files Additional Lawsuits Over Defective DePuy Pinnacle Metal-on-Metal Hip Implants

Searcy Denney’s Mass Tort Unit recently filed two new individual lawsuits on behalf of clients who have suffered personal injuries as a result of their defective DePuy metal-on-metal hip implants.  The first case was filed on behalf of a Boynton Beach man who was implanted in early 2008 with a Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implant manufactured by DePuy, a division of Johnson & Johnson.

Hip painA second individual lawsuit was filed on behalf of a disabled law enforcement officer in North Florida who was implanted with the Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip prosthesis in 2005.  Both of these patients have developed elevated levels of cobalt and chromium in their bloodstream due to metal debris and ions generated from defects in the articulating metal surfaces of the implants.  This condition is known as metallosis and leads to premature failure of the hip implant; the need for revision surgery; destruction of bone, muscle, and soft tissue around the hip joint; pseudotumor formation; and a decreased likelihood of having successful hip implantation surgeries in the future.

There is an ongoing scientific inquiry into the highly-debated topic of the potential for cobalt and chromium ions (or related metallic byproducts) that come off of these implants while in patients body to cause long-term systemic injuries, including hearing loss, visual disturbances, heart arrhythmias, or cancer.

Recently, the FDA requested that metal hip implant manufacturers conduct the scientific studies necessary to evaluate these important safety issues as a condition of the products remaining on the market, and most manufacturers chose not to sell the implants instead of funding the studies.  Sadly, these studies were not required by the  FDA, nor were they voluntarily performed by the device manufacturers, prior to the widespread marketing of metal-on-metal hip implants from 2005 through 2010.

This is what a common hip prosthesis looks like. The Pinnacle has a metal cup instead of a polyethylene (plastic) cup. Searcy Denney represents a number of clients who have been harmed after implantation of DePuy’s Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implants.  Individual lawsuits have been filed on behalf of the firm’s clients, and those cases are now pending in the national multi-district litigation proceedings  (also known as an MDL) that are pending before Judge Kinkeade in Dallas, Texas.  Judge Kinkeade will preside over the first jury trial against DePuy over the Pinnacle metal-on-metal implant in a trial beginning on September 1, 2014, in Texas.

The MDL proceedings include several thousand individual personal injury cases filed by patients who have been diagnosed with metallosis, premature hip implant failure, and have undergone revision surgery due to the alleged defective condition of the Pinnacle hip implant.


DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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