Thousands of people have filed Wright Medical hip lawsuits after experiencing pain, suffering, and the need for replacement or revision procedures related to their hip implant devices.
With about 300,000 hip replacement procedures performed each year, metal-on-metal (MoM) hip implant complications are increasingly common. Hip device failure may result in severe pain, loss of mobility, permanent disability and often require hip revision surgery to remove and replace the malfunctioning implant and repair damage to the hip joint.
Wright Medical has been making joint replacement devices for more than six decades and is best known for its hip and knee replacement devices. Unfortunately, like many companies manufacturing metal-on-metal hip replacement devices, Wright is facing a number of issues and patients are now taking legal action for injuries caused by its CONSERVE Hip System and the Profemur Z Stem models.
Wright Medical Hip Complications
Wright Medical hip implants use a metal-on-metal construction in which both parts, the “ball” and “socket” or “cup”, of a hip implant are constructed of metal. Metal-on-metal joint replacement devices are known for releasing metal fragments into joint tissue which may destroy local tissues, lead to bone loss and joint destabilization and result in a need for hip revision surgery.
MoM hip implants may also cause systemic or body-wide metal poisoning as microscopic metal fragments or ions may enter a patient’s bloodstream to provoke an immune reaction. Neurological damage may occur including vision problems, hearing problems, heart problems, problems with the thyroid, and damage to the nervous system.
Wright’s Profemur Z Stem, Conserve system, as well as the Lineage and Dynasty components are known for early failure due to metallosis and many who have the devices have suffered hip fractures and other complications and/or required revision surgery.
Read more about hip replacement complications here.
Wright Medical Hip Lawsuit Settlements
Wright Medical has been the subject of around 2,000 lawsuits filed for injuries caused by Conserve and Profemur hip implant devices. In February of 2012, federal cases were consolidated into multi-district litigation (MDL) in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, followed by consolidation of California state lawsuits in the Los Angeles Superior Court. In negotiations, it was determined that settlement offers would be spread over a period of years due to Wright’s financial situation. In November 2016, Wright agreed to settle about 1,300 cases for about $240 million. In October 2017, the company agreed to settle remaining claims for $90 million but settlement payments were delayed and may not have been paid in full and were pending payment from Wright’s insurance company.
Medical Injury lawsuits are not the only legal challenge Wright has faced. The company was sued by the federal government in 2007 when evidence surfaced that Wright was using bribery to persuade doctors to use its products. The DOJ lawsuit was settled in 2011. The claims and settlements paid thus far may not be the only Wright hip replacement lawsuits that the company will face however no new announcements have been made.
Filing a Wright Medical Hip Lawsuit
There is evidence that about one in every dozen people with either hip replacement has experienced health complications after the implantation of their device. Some evidence shows that up to 11% of certain Wright hip implant models may be prone to early failure and require revision surgery.
People with CONSERVE and Profemur replacement devices who have experienced complications could be eligible to receive compensation.
Many have reported problems including:
- Device failure
- Pain and suffering
- Need for revision or replacement surgery
- Difficult walking or standing
- Accumulation of metal ions in the body
- Hip dislocation or fracture
- Tissue inflammation
- Unsettling popping or crunching noises
Claims against Wright Medical include that the company was aware of issues with its metal-on-metal implant devices and failed to warn patients and doctors. Lawsuits also claim the design of the Wright devices was known to generate metal debris due to heat and friction, and that the manufacturer was aware of the potential danger related to its device but continued to sell it anyway.
Past medical injury settlements have included compensation for medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering and in some cases, punitive damages. Each case is unique and must be evaluated by a Wright hip replacement lawyer to determine whether compensation may be available.