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Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Legal Options

A metal-on-metal hip implant patient is reviewing her x-rays with her Physician.

Have you or a loved one suffered injuries from a metal-on-metal hip implant that failed prematurely? If so, you may have the legal right to seek compensation for your medical expenses, pain and suffering and other losses.

Thousands of metal-on-metal hip-implant patients in the U.S. have had corrective surgery because their implants failed prematurely. Several manufacturers – DePuy, Stryker, Smith & Nephew and Zimmer – have voluntarily recalled their metal-on-metal hip implant devices, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued advisories about these medical devices.

Research conducted after metal-on-metal hip implants came onto the market has shown that as the prosthetic hips’ ball-and-socket joints rub together, they can shed metal flakes. These tiny pieces of metal can damage or kill surrounding soft tissue, including muscle, tendons and ligaments.

These metal flakes can also shed ions that enter the bloodstream and damage other areas of the body, including the heart and brain. Meanwhile, the damaged implant loosens, which may cause pain and mobility problems for the patient.

All hip implants wear out eventually, but metal-on-metal hip implants have been shown to fail at high rates in about five years instead of after 15 to 20 years as should be expected.

Bringing Your Metal-On-Metal Hip Implant Case

Medical product manufacturers are legally obligated to ensure the devices they bring to market are safe and effective when used as intended. Otherwise, they must properly warn of the dangers inherent to such products.

The high rate of premature failure among metal-on-metal hip implants raises serious questions about the manufacturers’ liability.

Product liability claims are based on demonstrating:

  • Inherent flaws in the medical devices’ design and/or manufacture
  • Inadequate testing by manufacturers before the devices were put on the market
  • Manufacturers’ failure to adequately warn patients and surgeons about the risks, complications and side effects that the devices were known to cause.

People who have been harmed by metal-on-metal hip implants might consider personal injury lawsuits. If a hip implant patient has died from complications caused by an all-metal hip, surviving family members might pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.

When numerous people claim they have been harmed by a single faulty medical product, the court may combine similar lawsuits to make them easier to deal with. A class-action lawsuit, for example, may be declared if multiple clients have a shared interest in the case. Another procedure is to declare a multidistrict litigation (MDL) to consolidate multiple lawsuits filed in federal court that share one or more common questions of fact.

Class action or MDL lawsuits do not diminish the plaintiff’s claim or the damages they can expect to collect. These procedures simply allow cases to progress more rapidly.

Several lawsuits against metal-on-metal hip implant system manufacturers have been filed already. Those who have been harmed by all-metal implants have several options. They may initiate their own personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit or, in some cases, join existing class action or MDL suits.

Medical products liability cases are complex. Your case should be entrusted to an attorney experienced with successful litigation of personal injury and medical products liability lawsuits.

We Can Help You Determine the Best Strategy for Your Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Claim

If you believe that you or a loved one has suffered injury due to an all-metal hip implant, the Chicago metal-on-metal hip implant lawyers of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., can help you.

We have earned more than $800 million in damages for our clients, including in excess of 198 multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements. Schedule a free consultation about your case. Call us toll free or complete our online form. We’re ready to help you today.