Lawsuits against Howmedica Osteonics and the Stryker Corporation for misrepresentation and negligence are appearing nationwide. Since the Stryker hip implant was introduced into the consumer marketplace in 2009, several plaintiffs have come forward claiming injury and damages from the device.
Injuries Associated with Stryker
Each plaintiff experience is obviously unique; however general pain and suffering as well as expenses associated with rehabilitation and medications are being alleged by many, in some instances patients have been made to undergo additional surgeries to correct associated problems with the device.
The Stryker device is somewhat novel as compared to the other hip replacement products on the market, in that it is comprised of more than one piece. Unfortunately these pieces are made up of metal components that experts have suggested cause problems when the metal components rub on one another causing pain, swelling and even the release of dangerous levels of Cobalt and chromium into patients’ bloodstreams. Pain, bone loss, inflammation and cell destruction are attributed to Cobalt being released in the bloodstream, often resulting in follow-up hip revision surgeries.
Allegations Regarding Stryker
The FDA has reportedly received several reports related to the device, and lawsuits contend that the maker of the Stryker device marketed the system fraudulently, asserting that the metal-on-metal system was stronger than traditional devices, and neglecting to report the associated problems that could arise. It is expected that many more cases will be filed in the coming months, due to the large number of devices that have been implanted since their introduction in 2009.
Stryker Voluntary Recall
On July 6, 2012 the FDA announced that Stryker has recalled the problematic implants, although still asserting that complications from the devices are relatively low. The company still stands behind its product urging that it provides physicians with a better option for patients, although the corrosion and problems associated with the metal-on-metal device did encourage the recall.
To date, lawsuits have been filed for patients in Georgia, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Wisconsin and recently New Jersey (Howmedica’s principle place of business).
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