Wendy Fleishman and Lexi Hazam, of the national plaintiffs’ law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, has announced that over the past month 20 hip replacement patients represented by Lieff Cabraser have filed personal injury lawsuits against Stryker Orthopaedics. These suits charge that the company manufactured and sold defective artificial hip implants known as the Stryker Rejuvenate and Stryker ABG II hip implants. The patients hail from across the nation, including Alabama, California, Colorado, Illinois, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Texas.
In June 2012, Stryker recalled its Rejuvenate hip implant, along with the ABG II Modular Neck hip implant, due to fretting and/or corrosion in the implants which can release metal debris in and around the hip. The metal debris causes many patients to suffer significant pain and discomfort from a condition called metallosis, characterized by elevated blood metal levels and fluid buildup and swollen or damaged tissue in the hip, ultimately requiring revision surgery to remove and replace the faulty Stryker hip.
Stryker marketed the Rejuvenate and ABG II systems as being the “next generation” and “latest evolution” in their hip replacement product lines. Stryker began selling the Rejuvenate hip system in 2009 and the ABG II hip system in 2010. The neck pieces in the Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II implants are made of chromium and cobalt, and the stems are made of a titanium alloy, creating a metal-on-metal junction.
“Stryker conducted no clinical testing on the safety and effectiveness of either of these devices in hip replacement patients prior to introducing the devices to the market, even though corrosion and metallosis had been noted in the medical literature as problems associated with artificial joints manufactured with chromium, cobalt, and titanium,” stated Fleishman.