Wright Conserve Hip Implant Lawsuit Plaintiff Seeks Consolidation in Georgia

A plaintiff in a Wright Conserve hip implant lawsuit has filed a motion to have all similar lawsuits consolidated in one federal court. So far, at least five Wright Conserve hip implant lawsuits have been filed in various federal courts, but more complaints are expected.

The Wright Conserve hip replacement is a metal-on-metal implant. Lawsuits involving the device allege that it is prone to fail just a few years after implantation, often resulting in the need for revision surgery. According to the lawsuits, Wright Conserve hip implant failures are the result of metal particles being shed into the body from the metal parts rubbing against each other.

In a petition filed last month with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation, plaintiff Danny James requested that Wright Conserve hip implant lawsuits be consolidated in the Southern District of Georgia or the Northern District of Georgia. In the motion, James points out that other multidistrict have been created for litigation stemming from other metal-on-metal hip implants, including the federal DePuy ASR hip lawsuits and DePuy Pinnacle hip lawsuits. The petition alleges that since the Conserve hip replacement was approved by the FDA, there have been over 200 adverse event reports submitted to the agency concerning the device.

A multidistrict litigation would allow all of the Wright Conserve hip implant lawsuits filed in federal courts to be coordinated under one judge for pretrial litigation to avoid duplicative discovery, inconsistent rulings and to conserve the resources of the parties, witnesses and the court. When lawsuits are consolidated as a multidistrict litigation, each retains its own identity. If the multidistrict litigation process does not resolve the cases, they are transferred back to the court where they originated for trial.

The Wright Conserve hip implant is just one metal-on-metal hip implant that has been linked to serious complications, and is now the subject of lawsuits. Earlier this year, the growing number of problems reported by people with metal-on-metal hip implants caused the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to order Wright and 20 other hip replacement manufacturers to conduct post-market studies of their devices to determine if they were shedding dangerous amounts of metallic debris in patients.

All-metal hip implants are made with an acetabular cup and ball made of chromium and cobalt, which constantly grind against each other as the recipient walks and moves. Over time, dangerous amounts of metal debris may be shed into patients’ bloodstreams. It is believed that this can lead to tissue damage, premature device failure, the need for revision surgery, and even long-term health problems.

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