Patient Safety News: $247 million verdict for plaintiffs harmed by hip implant

Johnson & Johnson and its DePuy Orthopaedics unit are to pay $247 million to six patients who have suffered from defective Pinnacle hip implants. This decision comes after a $1 billion verdict in favor of plaintiffs in December of 2016. A March 2016 jury awarded plaintiffs $150 million in damages.

This is the third verdict of its kind against Johnson & Johnson because of the defective design of the Pinnacle hip implants. The plaintiffs who had the implants experienced bone erosion and tissue death.

A spokeswoman for DePuy said that they will continue to be “committed to the long-term defense of the allegations of these lawsuits.” John Beisner, an attorney for Johnson & Johnson and DePuy stated that the “nine-week trial was a disservice to everyone involved because the verdict will do nothing to advance the ultimate resolution of this six-year old litigation.”

Johnson & Johnson and DePuy face over 9,700 similar lawsuits across America for the defective product. Both companies took the Pinnacle devices off the market in 2013 because of new regulations set by the FDA.

Complications associated with defective hip implant components include, but are not limited to:

  • Hip dislocation
  • Bone fracture
  • Joint infection
  • Local nerve damage with numbness
  • Device loosening or breakage
  • Difference in leg lengths
  • Bone loss
  • Blood clots
  • Severe pain
  • Soft tissue damage
  • Swelling
  • Additional surgeries

Susan Faunce, an attorney at Berman & Simmons who handles cases involving dangerous drugs and medical devices, is accepting clients who have been affected by a defective hip implant. The firm currently represents multiple clients who have been injured by metal on metal hip implants.