New DePuy Orthopaedics ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement Filed in Hawaii

Lawsuits continue to be filed by victims of the DePuy Orthopaedics ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement System. Most recently, a woman in Hawaii filed a DePuy lawsuit over the recalled ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement System, alleging her implant has caused her considerable pain.

In August, J&J issued a worldwide <"">DePuy hip replacement recall of the ASR XL Acetabular System, a hip socket used in traditional hip replacement, and the ASR Hip Resurfacing System, a partial hip replacement that involves placing a metal cap on the ball of the femur. Only the ASR XL Acetabular System was approved for use in the US. The recall was issued after data from the National Joint Registry of England and Wales showed that 1 out of every 8 patients (12%-13%) who had received the recalled devices had to undergo revision surgery within five years of receiving it. A hip implant should last for 15 years or so.

In its recall notice, <"">DePuy Orthopedics said additional testing and treatment may be necessary to ensure the hip is functioning well. In some cases, patients may need additional surgery.

As we’ve reported previously, DePuy had been receiving reports for several years regarding early failures of the implant. According to a report on the Independent, a UK media outlet, the Australian Joint Registry – the second largest database in the world after the England and Wales National Joint Registry – issued seven reports to DePuy starting in 2007 that identified problems with the hip implant system. The ASR system was finally withdrawn from the Australian market in December 2009.

DePuy was already phasing out the ASR hip implant system when it finally acknowledged in March 2010 that the device was prone to early failure. By that time, the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) had received hundreds of reports describing premature failure of the DePuy ASR hip implant system. Still, it would be months before the DePuy ASR hip implant system was finally recalled.

Jacqueline Lum is the first Hawaiian to file a DePuy Orthopaedics ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement lawsuit. She had surgery in August 2009 to replace her left hip. Lum told the Star-Advertiser that she started feeling pain about three months later.

“It’s really bad. I can stand up, sit up on a chair, (but) it hurts. (To) sleep at night I need to take medications to help take the pain away,” she said

Lum is scheduled to have surgery to replace her defective hip implant next month.

More than a dozen state and federal lawsuits have been filed around the country because of the DePuy ASR hip implant. In September, plaintiffs’ attorneys motioned the US Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate all such federal cases in a multidistrict litigation before Judge Susan D. Wigenton. DePuy, however, wants the claims heard either in federal court in the Northern District of Indiana at South Bend or the Northern District of Ohio at Toledo; both of which are near its Warsaw, Indiana, headquarters.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys expect the litigation surrounding the DePuy ASR hip implant recall to be massive, and many are predicting that more than 4,000 lawsuits could be filed.

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