The president of Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy Orthopaedics unit testified at a Chicago trial that the company implemented a 2010 global recall of 93,000 hip implants because the devices were not meeting “clinical expectations.”
“The revision rate was not acceptable,” Andrew Ekdahl testified on the third day of an Illinois state court trial, and this was the reason for the recall. But the plaintiff’s attorneys challenged Ekdahl on this explanation, Bloomberg News reports. Ekdahl was asked about a DePuy document from the Health Hazard Risk/Evaluation Review Board, signed by top company officials days before the recall. Of the three explanations listed for the device recall, DePuy officials checked Class A for “defective product that would affect product performance and/or could cause health problems.” In his opening statement on March 13, a J&J attorney said the device was not defective.
But, plaintiff Carol Strum, a 54-year-old nurse, claims her DePuy ASR XL hip was defective. Strum had the all-metal hip replacement implanted in 2008, but three years later she needed revision surgery to remove and replace the hip device, Bloomberg News writes. Strum’s lawsuit is the second of nearly 11,000 ASR lawsuits to go to trial. Last week, at the conclusion of the first trial, a Los Angeles jury found that the DePuy ASR was defective and awarded $8.3 million to Loren Kransky, the Montana man who brought the suit.
In opening statement Strum’s attorney told jurors that, because of design flaws, the ASR hip implant shed chromium and cobalt debris into surrounding tissue and that DePuy knew the device was defective, according to Bloomberg News.