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Hip Replacement Injury Claims

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If you have suffered an injury due to a faulty hip replacement system, you may be entitled to make hip replacement injury claims against the manufacturer of the faulty medical device and against the HSE for allowing the device to be used in Ireland without adequate clinical trials.

Many faulty hip replacement systems enter the Irish market due to a failure to conduct proper safety checks on the devices, and should you be suffering from any form of illness which is attributable to a faulty hip replacement system, you should speak with a solicitor about making a claim for hip replacement injury compensation at the earliest possible opportunity.

You will find news articles on this subject below.

Why You Should Consult A Solicitor

While we strive to ensure all the articles on this site are factually accurate you should never solely rely on the information supplied here. Every hip replacement case is different and while reading one of our articles can provide you with general information you should always get expert advice and consult a solicitor before taking any action that may have legal consequences.

For this reason we also provide a confidential 24-hour helpline where you can talk to a highly experienced and specialised medical negligence solicitor who will answer any questions you may have about your potential compensation claim.

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We Have Updated Our Medical Negligence Claims Information Page

We have updated our medical negligence claims information page so that it is more comprehensive than ever before and offers advice on the procedures that need to be completed prior to claiming compensation for medical negligence in Ireland. As ever, the information we provide about medical negligence claims is no substitute for speaking directly with an experienced solicitor and, if you believe that you – or somebody close to you – has suffered a loss, an injury or the avoidable deterioration of an existing condition, which could have been prevented if you had received an acceptable standard of care, you are advised to discuss your individual situation with a solicitor without delay. You can visit our revised page containing medical negligence claims information by clicking on the link below: >> Medical Negligence Claims <<

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Further Delays to DePuy Hip Replacement Court Case

Further delays to the DePuy hip replacement court case in Ohio have been caused by a late substitute of plaintiff and the judge ruling that the worldwide recall of faulty DePuy hip replacement systems cannot be used as evidence in court. The start of the first Federal DePuy hip replacement court case was delayed last week after U.S. District Judge David A. Katz allowed the parties in McCracken -v- DePuy (Case No 1:11 dp 20485) more time for discovery and to deal with other legal matters. The DePuy hip replacement court case has now been rescheduled to September 24th and will concern the injury sustained by Ann McCracken (57) from Rochester in New York, who suffered a dislocated hip allegedly due to metal particles from her DePuy ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement System causing the soft tissues around her hip to decay. Ann had her DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip replacement system implanted in August 2009, but it had to be removed in January 2011 after she had sustained her injury. In October 2011, Ann had to undergo a further operation to insert a device to restrict the movement of her hip, which has reduced her range of mobility and will result in her current hip replacement system wearing out sooner than normal – resulting in more surgery in the future. Judge Katz has already agreed that the recall of the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular and ASR Articular Surface Hip Replacement Systems should not be mentioned in court – not only because he wants the DePuy hip replacement court case to be heard on the merits of the individual action, but DePuy´s lawyers argued successfully that any reference to the DePuy recall at trial might deter other companies from voluntarily withdrawing potentially harmful medical devices because of the legal implications. One of the purposes of Ann´s DePuy hip replacement court case is to establish the relative strengths and weaknesses of the plaintiffs´ claims and DePuy´s defence. If Ann´s case, and others included in the `Bellwether’ trials still to be scheduled, results in a “standard” of compensation settlements, DePuy Orthopaedics Inc are likely to make offers of injury compensation to the 7,800 plaintiffs also attached to this DePuy hip replacement court case through a consolidated multidistrict litigation (MDL). If no compensation standard is set by the juries in each of the trials – or if there is a mixture of positive and negative verdicts returned – all of the outstanding DePuy hip replacement court cases will be returned to the US District Courts in which they were filed – prolonging the length of time it will take for each plaintiff to receive a fair settlement of DePuy injury compensation. This latter scenario would also have an impact on plaintiffs in Ireland waiting to hear if they will be made an acceptable offer of DePuy injury compensation, or whether they will have to endure their own DePuy hip replacement court case.

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Compensation for Overseas Road Traffic Injury Resolved in Court

In a landmark ruling at the High Court, compensation for overseas traffic injury was determined applying judicial discretion rather than the Book of Quantum for the country in which the injury was sustained. The case in which the judgement regarding compensation for overseas road traffic injury was made concerned Peter Kelly (75) of Ranelagh, Dublin, who in June 2009 was run over by a maintenance van belonging to the municipality of Cannes while on holiday in France. Peter fractured his hip in the overseas road traffic accident and, in 2011, had to undergo a hip replacement operation. Although the municipality´s insurers – Groupama – accepted liability for Peter´s injuries, the company argued that the compensation for overseas road traffic injury should be resolved according to the French Book of Quantum rather than that of Ireland which awards significantly higher levels of personal injury compensation. Accepting the argument, Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O´Neill at the High Court, applied the methodology that would be used in a French court to determine how much compensation for overseas road traffic injury Peter should receive, but added a considerable amount of damages to compensate Peter – who had enjoyed a high level of physical activity prior to his accident – for his loss of amenity. The judge noted that although any figures quoted in the French Book of Quantum could be considered a viable guide, it did not restrict a judge in determining how much compensation for overseas road traffic accident should be awarded in total. Consequently, and including 24,267 Euros which had already been agreed in special damages, Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O´Neill awarded Peter 88,167 Euros in compensation for overseas road traffic accident rather than the 62,773 Euros he would have received had his damages been assessed in France.

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DePuy Pinnacle Injury Claims made following BBC Investigation

An investigation carried out by the BBC´s Newsnight programme and the British Medical Journal has made DePuy Pinnacle injury claims similar to those which led to the DePuy ASR hip replacement recall of August 2010.   The investigation alleges that high levels of cobalt and chromium are entering the blood streams of patients who have had the DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement implanted, causing the hip replacements to fail as bone decay, tissue necrosis and inflammation make the metal-on-metal hip implant system unstable. The blood contamination, or “system toxicity”, is caused by debris produced by the friction within the ball and cup of the implant forming a mass around the hip implant or dispersing into the blood. Injuries that patients implanted with the Pinnacle hip replacement system have encountered include:- Inflammations, pains and rashes around the hip area Grinding, clicking or popping sounds coming from implant Pains in the thigh or groin – especially when bearing heavy loads Pains in the hip area when rising from a seated position The development of cysts anywhere around the body The DePuy Pinnacle injury claims made by the BBC and British Medical Journal are supported by evidence collected from UK hospitals and clinics in America, which shown chromium levels in the blood of up to 50 times the normal amount – a particular concern for women of child-bearing age who have received metal-on-metal hip implants, as high levels of metal ions had been found in umbilical cords and the placental blood of women who have given birth. The investigation did not stop with DePuy Pinnacle injury claims. All metal-on-metal hip replacement systems were identified as being potentially harmful, and the BBC/British Medical Journal report particularly condemned the UK medical regulator – The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) – for allowing faulty hip replacements into the market without any form of clinical trials. It was alleged that data had been available since 2005 which should have alerted the MHRA to the potential dangers of metal-on-metal hip replacements, and that the MHRA had failed in its duty of care to 60,000 recipients of metal-on-metal hip implants as the agency responsible for ensuring that medical devices work and are acceptably safe. NOTE: If you, or anybody you know, have been the recipient of a metal-on-metal hip replacement system, the advice currently being issued by the Irish Medicines Board is to have an annual blood test and x-ray and, if high levels of chromium or cobalt are present in the blood, to have an MRI scan. Patients who wish to know more about DePuy Pinnacle injury claims for compensation should speak with a solicitor at the earliest possible opportunity.

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Claim for Faulty Hip Device Made by Former DePuy Counsellor

A woman, who used to counsel patients about to undergo hip replacement surgery, has made a claim for faulty hip device compensation after the failure of her own DePuy ASR hip replacement system. The face of Penny Brown (51) from Bath in Wiltshire was familiar to many people about to have a DePuy ASR hip replacement operation. After her own implant in 2004, Penny acted as an ambassador for the company – counselling patients about to undergo surgery, allowing her image to used in DePuy marketing material and speaking to media about how her DePuy ASR hip replacement system had relieved of the pain of osteoarthritis. However, in 2009, Penny started to experience a pain in her groin whenever she walked. Within a few months more, a clunking noise developed from her implant and the pain spread. Like so many others making DePuy hip recall compensation claims, Penny was told that her DePuy ASR hip replacement system was failing and she would have to undergo revision surgery. Penny´s operation took place in April this year but, because of complications caused by her faulty hip device, she has been bed-ridden ever since and been unable to work. “I not only feel let down personally but also feel guilty that I might have encouraged others to have the ASR implanted” Penny told local reporters when the news broke of her claim for faulty hip device compensation. Better Injury Claims Comment: Penny´s delay in seeking medical attention when the pain in her thigh first developed may have exasperated the complications of her surgery and it is of vital importance that, if you have receive any model of metal on metal hip replacement system, you seek urgent medical attention as soon as you believe that a health problem is developing which may be attributable to a faulty hip device.

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Woman Knocked Down by Bus at Pedestrian Crossing Accident awarded €8m

A woman who was knocked down by a bus on a pedestrian crossing is to receive an award of €8m in compensation after representatives of the bus company agreed to an out-of-court settlement just as the jury were being seated at the Alameda County Superior Court. On November 3 2008, Abby Nichols (23) of Oakland, California, had just finished her day’s work at the San Francisco bagel shop in which she worked as an assistant, and started crossing the road at the junction of Telegraph Avenue and 51st Street. Despite the green light being in her favour, a bus turned into the road, knocking Abby over, and trapping her beneath the chassis of the vehicle. She stayed trapped for a further 15 minutes, as the bus driver did not know how to operate the hydraulic lever, and Abby sustained a crushed hip that needed to be replaced, a broken pelvis and femur. The bus company, AC Transit, found in their own examination that the bus driver was guilty of negligence but failed to arrange a quick settlement for Abby. It was only when a legal action was taken that Abby – who stills undergoes physical therapy and walks with the aid of a cane – managed to obtain the bus injury compensation to which she was entitled.

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HSE Changes Position on DePuy ASR Patient Consent Forms

The Health Service Executive (HSE) has changed its position on the signing of DePuy ASR patient consent forms following pressure from patients and personal injury solicitors in Ireland. Together with the Independent Hospital Association of Ireland, the HSE has announced it is recalling the old DePuy ASR patient consent forms and issuing new ones which no longer include the condition that the explanted DePuy ASR hip replacement be returned to DePuy Orthopaedics. Despite the change, patients intending to make DePuy hip recall compensation claims should not sign the DePuy ASR patients consent forms without first taking legal advice. The current offer of hip replacement injury compensation from DePuy Orthopaedics covers the medical costs associated with testing for a failed hip replacement system, revision surgery where necessary, and “reasonable and customary” expenses for patients who have to take time off from work, travel long distances and require overnight accommodation for their examinations and surgery. There is no consideration in the DePuy compensation offer for the pain and suffering caused by a faulty hip replacement system before, during and after surgery, and long periods of rehabilitation which may result in a considerable loss of income. Furthermore, the new DePuy ASR patient consent forms free DePuy, the HSE and Independent Hospital Association of Ireland against any future claims for DePuy hip replacement compensation. Should high levels of chromium and cobalt from the failed hip replacement systems cause damage to any other of the patient´s organs after surgery has taken place, the new DePuy ASR patient consent forms would indemnify all three parties from future legal action. As there is a case for claiming medical negligence compensation against the HSE as well as claiming product liability compensation against DePuy Orthopaedics Inc., DO NOT SIGN THE DEPUY ASR PATIENT CONSENT FORM without first taking legal advice.

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Claims for DePuy Pinnacle Compensation Consolidated in Texas

More than 300 claims for DePuy Pinnacle compensation have been consolidated into one “multi-district litigation” case (MDL) that will be heard in Texas in the United States. The claims have been made due to injuries which are comparable to the DePuy ASR hip replacement systems that were recalled in August 2010 after a higher than expected failure rate was acknowledged. The reason for the consolidation into one MDL is to help those making claims for DePuy Pinnacle compensation to have their cases heard quicker and recover compensation for their faulty hip replacement systems sooner. Although it is not unusual for compensation claims in the States to be combined in this way, the high number of claimants so soon after the DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system was brought to the market is alarming. Only introduced in 2008 – five years later than the recalled DePuy ASR hip replacement systems – the DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system avoided testing by the Food and Drug Administration due to a process known as the 501(k) process. This process enables manufacturers of medical devices to avoid clinical testing for their products by displaying that they are similar in design and function to an existing product on the market. In the case of the DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system, its design was passed as being similar to the recalled ASR hip replacement system. A similar “backdoor” process enabled the DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system to bypass the Irish Medicines Board and Health Service Executive, and now recipients of the faulty Pinnacle hip device may be beginning to experience symptoms identical to those injured by the DePuy ASR hip replacements. If you or a loved one has been the recipient of a DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system, you are advised to see your doctor for a blood test immediately. If a high level of system toxicity is identified, you will be required to undergo revision surgery – even if your DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system is still functioning properly. Thereafter speak with a solicitor about making claims for DePuy Pinnacle compensation. The process is similar to that for making DePuy hip recall compensation claims except, at the moment, DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. have not admitted their negligence in the design and manufacture of the DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement system.

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Claim for Metal Poisoning Compensation in New DePuy Case

A woman from West Virginia in America has made a claim for metal poisoning compensation against DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. after high levels of biologic toxicity were discovered in her blood stream. Delores Hatcher, from Wheeling in West Virginia, is the latest name to be added to the growing list of DePuy hip recall compensation claims after meta cobalt and chromium-1 were discovered in her blood – ions which are acknowledged to cause cardiovascular and neurological health issues. Delores received her DePuy ASR hip replacement system in November 2009, but within months was experiencing pain in the region of the implant and was finding it difficult to walk. In April, the results of Delores´ blood test indicated that she was at risk from the high levels of metallic ions in her blood and, after seeking legal advice, she made a claim for metal poisoning compensation against DePuy Orthopaedics. In her claim Delores also alleges that DePuy and their parent company – Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceuticals – concealed known defects of the hip replacement system and used “unjust enrichment” marketing practices – something for which DePuy Orthopaedics have already been fined by the U.S. Attorney´s Office. Advice: All recipients of metal-on-metal hip replacement devices are advised to have a minimum of one blood test each year to check for the presence of metallic ions – active people, likely to create more friction within the hip replacement device, should consider increasing the frequency. If you are found to have a level of cobalt or chromium higher than 7 particles per billion, it is likely that revision surgery will be required.

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MDL Process Starts for Faulty Hip Replacement Compensation Claims

The first stage of resolving the faulty hip replacement compensation claims made against DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. for their faulty hip replacement systems has begun in the United States.   Solicitors representing thousands of claimants making DePuy hip recall compensation claims in the multi-district litigation action are to take depositions from three DePuy executives to determine the company´s structure and policies on electronically stored data. It is believed that the depositions will lead to significant information about the sales and marketing practices of DePuy Orthopaedics which will strengthen their clients´ faulty hip replacement compensation claims. Over one thousand claimants are making faulty hip replacement compensation claims against DePuy Orthopaedics in this action. However, more than 93,000 thousand people received the recalled ASR hip replacement systems between 2003 and 2010 and, with a failure rate approaching 13 per cent in the United States, more than ten thousand recipients of the faulty hip replacement systems could be entitled to claim compensation. The first stage of the multi-district litigation process is scheduled to be completed by the end of April, at which time the Honourable Judge David A. Katz of the Northern District of Ohio will begin to hear pre-trial arguments from both parties. As the trial progresses, it is anticipated that more people will have to undergo revision surgery, and the number of faulty hip replacement claims could rise still further.

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Individual Claims for DePuy Compensation Advocated by U.S. Drug Watchdog

The U.S. Drug Watchdog – a private company that monitors medical devices and pharmaceutical companies in the United States – has urged patients who have been implanted with faulty hip replacements to make claims for DePuy compensation individually. The statement comes as many class actions suits are being prepared against DePuy Orthopaedics Inc and its parent company Johnson & Johnson following the recall of the ASR Articular Surface Hip Replacement System and the ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement System due to a “higher than expected” failure rate. The U.S. Drug Watchdog fears that DePuy hip recall compensation claims made collectively may see some patients who suffer more debilitating injuries as a result of the faulty hip implants lose up to 100,000 dollars in DePuy compensation. The company advocates making claims for DePuy compensation individually in order that everybody will receive a fair and adequate level of compensation. According to the U.S. Drug Watchdog, settlement of class action claims for DePuy compensation in the United States will also prove to be a slow process, with more than 5,000 claimants currently listed in the Multi-District Litigation taking place in Ohio. Further delays may occur due to an ongoing investigation by the Justice Department into the role of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in the promotion of faulty hip replacement systems. DePuy Orthopaedics were recently found guilty of defrauding the national social insurance program – Medicare – and one of four companies fined a total of 310 million dollars by the U.S. government.

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Faulty Metal on Metal Hip Devices Claim Made by FDA

The U.S. Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) has updated its advice to recipients of metal on metal hip devices, claiming that any model of metal medical device which creates friction can produce injuries similar to those seen with the recently recalled DePuy ASR hip replacement systems. The FDA faulty metal on metal hip devices claim suggest that “adverse reactions to metal debris” can affect the health of anybody implanted with a metal on metal hip device, not just those models which have been recalled.  These adverse reactions are caused by the release of microscopic metal particles when friction occurs between the head and the cup of the implant and, according to the FDA, will cause different reactions in different people. The most common indicators of “system toxicity” are pains around the implant area, a clicking noise when walking or an inflammation within or close to the hip area. However, the faulty metal on metal hip devices claim made by the FDA also warns of dangers to the heart, thyroids, nerves and kidneys, and advises recipients of all metal on metal hip devices to be conscious of any physical changes to their health. The FDA advises patients to see a doctor and have a blood test if symptoms which may be related to metal debris from a metal on metal hip device manifest. Depending on the level of chromium and cobalt registered in the blood test, the doctor will then order an x-ray to observe the integrity of the metal on metal hip device or an MRI to look for any organ damage elsewhere in the body. There are several non-surgical treatments that a doctor can perform depending on the extent of the injury, but as those already making DePuy hip recall compensation claims will be aware, revision surgery is likely once the cause of the symptoms has been identified as a faulty metal on metal hip device. UPDATE February 2012: Advice issued by the Irish Medicines Board is that recipients of any metal on metal hip devices should have annual blood tests and x-rays to check the integrity of their hip replacements.

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Faulty Hip Replacement Recall in Ireland Begins

Following the faulty hip replacement recall in Ireland made by DePuy Orthopaedics last month, the Health Service Executive (HSE) has reported that 3,516 patients have been implanted with the recalled DePuy ASR XL Acetabular and DePuy ASR Articular hip replacement systems since the medical devices were introduced into the country in 2003. According to data from the UK´s National Joint Registry, 13 per cent of these devices have “failed” within the first five years of being implanted due to friction between the ball and cup of the metal on metal hip replacements. The metal debris released due to this friction then weakens the bone and tissues surrounding the implant, causing it to become loose. The metal debris has also been attributed to pain, inflammation and other health issues surrounding the implant. DePuy Orthopaedics have stated that they will cover the medical costs of the faulty hip replacement recall in Ireland, but no mention as yet been made of compensation to patients for their pain and suffering. Revision surgery – the process to take out the faulty hip replacement and implant a new one – can be more complicated and painful for the patient, due to the damage to the hip bone and surrounding tissues, and patients may have an extended recovery and rehabilitation period. In order for the HSE to recover costs incurred in the faulty hip replacement recall in Ireland, patients are being asked to sign medical consent forms allowing DePuy Orthopaedics access to their medical records and the return of the faulty hip replacement after surgery. Our advice is DO NOT SIGN THE DEPUY CONSENT FORMS without first seeking professional legal advice. The explanted faulty hip replacement may be required in future litigation if an appropriate offer of  compensation is not forthcoming.

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