As a patient needing hip replacement surgery, you hope the artificial replacement works well to help you recover fully and readjust to your everyday life. Usually, your medical provider finds an artificial hip replacement that matches the previously removed one. Thus, the medical procedure aims to improve support for patients over time. However, you may suffer health risks and potential long-term disability if a defective hip implant forms part of the treatment surgery.
The implant exposes you to numerous potential complications, including life-threatening body reactions. If you or a loved one suffers adverse health conditions from a defective hip implant, you can seek legal redress to help you receive compensation. At Consumer Alert Now, you have access to a legal team with years of experience handling compensatory claims for defective products. With our help, you can join a mass tort lawsuit to increase your chances of a favorable case outcome. Our services are available nationwide, so you do not have to worry about case applicability in different states.
How Proper Hip Implants Should Work
The human hip comprises a movable joint in a ball socket shape. Therefore, a healthy hip operates by allowing the ball to move within a confined cup-like bone. Due to this, you can sit, stand or stretch your leg with the necessary support.
However, you may require a replacement after an accident causing trauma to your hips. A hip replacement surgery is often a last-resort treatment option if your hip bone is damaged beyond repair. Your medical professional will have studied your body imaging documents to determine whether the surgery is the best step.
After receiving the hip implant, it should function like your natural bone, providing the same support and flexibility. Moreover, the hip implant design should remain efficient for the rest of your life, especially if your doctor followed the correct hip replacement procedures.
Thus, if you experience any unusual symptoms after the hip replacement surgery, you want to contact your doctor immediately to establish the causes. Since they are experienced, they can determine whether your hip is defective.
Understanding the characteristics of a functional hip implant can help you determine whether yours is defective to further guide you on the best actions to take. The two main elements to look out for are whether the implant provides the necessary support and lasts for the expected period.
Types of Artificial Hip Implants
Different hip implants are available in the market, and your doctor will recommend the most suitable one for you, depending on your condition. The materials used in developing the implants are the primary source of distinction, as different patients may be allergic to various components.
The first and most common type of hip implant is the metal on metal which consists of metal components shaped like your original hip. Since replicating the original ball and cup hip placements is crucial, the metal on metal implants are made from cobalt and chromium. These metals are easy to work with, giving the specialists tasked with forming them an easier time.
Alternatively, your doctor may recommend ceramic on ceramic hip implants, especially if you are allergic to the two metals used in the first option. Furthermore, ceramic closely resembles your bone density, making it another commonly chosen option for patients about to undergo hip replacement surgery. However, this option is often more expensive because the ceramic material comes from valuable raw materials.
A combination of ceramic on metal is also accessible, exposing you to potential Wright hip implant complications. The situation may arise if the metallic part of the implant causes defects, warranting you to seek a revision surgery to remove it from the body.
Similarly, your doctor may suggest a metal on polyethylene plastic hip implant combination if it is more likely to work better for your case. If so, you may also fall victim to the defective Wright hip implant product that causes various complications requiring revision surgery.
Cases of Defective Wright Hip Implants
The Food and Drug Administration(FDA) has investigated Wright hip implants for defective features after numerous cases of patients experiencing complications emerged. Specifically, the Wright hip implants are under investigation and recall for their metal-on-metal products that expose patients to potential blood poisoning, imbalance, and pain after the replacement surgery.
Based on the defective nature of the implants, affected patients have sought legal avenues to receive compensation for the harm they suffered. Furthermore, the FDA has halted the sale and use of hip implants to reduce the number of reported cases.
Similarly, the production company also started a voluntary product recall following the reported complaints, signaling a possibility of defective products. Therefore, you have a valid claim for suffering harm after a Wright hip implant surgery, provided you meet the legal criteria.
Types of Defective Hip Implants Under FDA Investigations
The FDA also provided details on the specific hip implant brands under investigation and recall after a significant number of complaints from their users surfaced. Hence, you want to look out for the following hip implant brands and avoid them based on their defective product reports:
- Wright Conserve implants
- Heritage replacement liner
- Performer Z hip implant
- Lineage replacement liner
- Monoblock conserve cup
- Dynasty replacement hip liner
If you are unsure of the specific hip replacement liner or conserve cup used during your surgery, you want to consult your doctor as soon as possible. Obtaining the relevant information in time can help you build your legal case sooner, giving you a better chance of recovering damages for the harm you faced.
Issues Causing the Defectiveness in the Implant
Having identified the defective hip implant brands, you may also need to understand the specific shortcomings that result in their defective nature. This way, you can point to the exact problem that caused your injuries and other medical issues. Thanks to the information, you will have a better basis to justify your need for compensation compared to filing general claims.
Common characteristics of a defective Wright hip implant include:
Poor Implant Positioning
Typically, a regular and functional hip implant should remain in the correct position as you walk, sit or stand, as its design replicates your original hip. Therefore, if the hip replacement positioning changes over time, it may indicate an underlying problem with the product. Consequently, you may need a medical examination to establish the specific cause of the poor positioning, which often points to the defective product.
Metal Corrosion While in the Body
Additionally, metal on metal hip implants may cause corrosion in the body as the ball and cup structures grind against each other during movement. The condition may be more apparent in active patients who enjoy walking or sporting activities.
Since the hips are constantly engaged, a defective product may cause the metal to disintegrate into small pieces that may enter the bloodstream. The corrosion can cause the hip implant to move out of the correct position because the chipped parts change the overall implant position. Upon noticing a change in your overall health and comfort around your hips, you should schedule a consultation to determine the problem.
When you undergo hip implant surgery, the goal is to provide an artificial replacement suitable to help you rebuild your everyday life. Therefore, a fractured implant calls for a deeper analysis and is acceptable as justification for seeking compensation after you undergo revision surgery.
The main reason for seeking compensation is that your hip implant should be sturdy enough to support your body weight. It should also support mild to moderate pressure when you fall or experience trauma from a minor accident. Thus, if the implant fractures easily, it qualifies for classification as defective because it fails to provide the proper functionality.
Unstable Implant Placement
Further, any unstable hip implant placement qualifies as sufficient justification for a compensatory claim against the manufacturing company. The instability defeats the hip replacement purpose, meaning you are less likely to rebuild your health and regain proper posture. Hence, if you notice a persistent unstable feeling even after your hip replacement surgery, it may point to a defective implant.
Signs of a Defective Wright Hip Implant in Patients
Sometimes, you may overlook the defective nature of your hip replacement implant until the situation worsens. Nevertheless, you can use the information below to help you identify potential defects and seek medical interventions sooner.
However, some signs are more common for patients whose implants have already caused significant damage. If so, you should still report the case to give you a better chance of recovering from the expenses and body injuries you suffer. Some signs of defective hip implants to look out for include:
Unusual Sounds Around the Joint When Moving
Experiencing unusual sounds around your hip as you walk, sit or stand can be an early indicator of a defective product because the sounds often indicate friction. However, you should note that the sounds occasionally occur from sudden movements.
Your best option is to track the frequency of sounds from the hip until you are sure of the possible defects causing them. Afterward, you want to consult your doctor as soon as possible for a proper diagnosis and treatment as you await to take legal action for the defective product.
Continuous or Sudden Aches Near the Hip Area
Moreover, experiencing pain after a hip replacement should be a cause for alarm, especially after healing fully and functioning normally for some time. This is because any early indicators of your body rejecting the implant or any other medical complication become apparent soon after its insertion.
Conversely, a sudden onset of pain or discomfort that becomes continuous is a sign that your hip implant may be defective. Notably, the only way to verify your suspicions is by having a medical professional check the condition for a conclusive finding.
Change of Walking Position
Some patients do not experience pain but notice changes in their walking and standing positions. A noticeable difference can indicate your hip implant is shifting from its original placement because of defects.
Typical signs of changing position include limping while walking, inclining your body to one position while standing, or inability to assume a specific place that you could previously do. Subsequently, the defects may be from the ball and cup shifting out of the initial placement due to the material used.
Reduced Mobility from Discomfort
In extreme cases, you may temporarily lose your ability to walk or stand because these two movements greatly rely on hip support. Your immobilization likely stems from the pain and discomfort you feel when you try to undertake different activities.
Some patients also report a gradual increase in pain, making it difficult to engage their legs in positions requiring hip support. Doubtless, reduced mobility is among the adverse symptoms of a defective Wright hip implant, and you should consult your doctor as soon as possible.
Continuous Irritation Around the Hips
Irritations from a defective hip implant may manifest as a persistent internal itch or dull pain around the hips. Common causes of the irritation include metal corrosion that affects your blood and surrounding hip muscles.
Swelling Around the Hip
Since the tissue surrounding your hips is sensitive to external conditions, you may also experience swelling. By increasing your white blood cell count, your body activates its self-defense mechanisms to prevent bacteria and other components that may cause infections. In doing so, the white blood cells will fight off the foreign elements to retain your health, and many cells die in the process.
Hence, the side effects you experience are often from the accumulation of dead white blood cells, resulting in pus accumulation and swelling. If you notice these symptoms around your hip area, you want to check into the emergency room immediately for urgent medical attention.
Blood Poisoning from Metal Debris
Signs of blood poisoning vary from fever, shivers, dizziness, loss of consciousness, and fatalities in extreme cases. Early symptoms may also include nausea and vomiting as your body tries to expel the foreign material. Usually, patients are more likely to experience blood poisoning if they had a metal-on-metal Wright implant fitted, as it is more likely to chip away with continuous friction from movement. Hence, reporting your symptoms and receiving early treatment can significantly improve your chances of survival.
Seeking Legal Redress for a Defective Wright Hip Implant
If you or a loved one experiences any of the discussed symptoms from a defective Wright hip implant, you want to report the case to an experienced legal professional as soon as possible. However, seeking medical attention to address the symptoms is advisable, as the procedures will help you regain your health.
Upon consulting your defective product attorney, they will inquire about additional information from you to help them establish the relevant facts. Hence, you want to provide all case facts and ensure that you have accurate dates of your first surgical procedure and when you started noticing defects.
The most appropriate legal avenue to seek compensation for a defective Wright hip implant is by joining a mass tort lawsuit. A mass tort lawsuit combines aggrieved parties with similar case facts as yours and targets one main defendant responsible for manufacturing the product in question.
Notably, joining a mass tort lawsuit increases your chances of success because the high number of claimants increases your credibility. Further, attorneys representing the claimants have a better workflow system because they can consult each other to ensure that the case facts align.
Your attorney will inform you of the guidelines and eligibility criteria you must satisfy before joining the mass tort lawsuit claimants. If you meet all the requirements, you will receive a certificate of validity, giving you the chance to present your facts and receive consideration for compensation.
Patients Eligible to Seek Compensation
To qualify as a mass tort lawsuit party, your attorney will help you verify that the case elements in your matter align with the overall premise of the lawsuit. Hence, you must be an eligible party to sue the hip implant manufacturer in one of the following ways:
If You Underwent Revision Surgery for Hip Metal Elements Replacement
Revision surgery can be intense, mainly because you have already undergone the initial hip replacement surgery. Nevertheless, replacing the defective hip implant is the most suitable option to avoid health complications.
Thus, any patient who undergoes revision surgery to replace metal on metal elements of the hip implant has a rightful claim. The surgery may be necessary to replace the hip liner, cup, or both, depending on what causes the problem.
If Your Metal on Metal Hip Implant Causes Corrosion
Additionally, a metal on the metal hip that causes corrosion or other medical complications also exposes you to significant health risks. Hence, if you faced a revision surgery with handling the corrosion, you can also present a claim against the implant manufacturers.
If You Received Replacement Surgery for Wright Conserve, Dynasty, or Lineage Implants
Further, the court will consider specific hip implant brands causing adverse health effects for their users. The FDA reports on dangerous hip devices, including Wright conserve, Dynasty, and Lineage implants, have made it easier for patients who used them as hip replacements to file a rightful lawsuit against the manufacturing companies.
Compensatory Claims Accepted in Court
After the presiding judge or jury considers the facts in issue, they will assess the weight of the claimants’ case. Usually, mass tort lawsuits conclude in the claimants’ favor because of the overwhelming evidence from the many aggrieved parties. Nonetheless, the judge is still keen to ensure that the presented claims are relevant to the facts in issue to avoid overexploiting the defendant’s liability.
Acceptable claims to make in the lawsuit include:
Damages for Medical Expenses
The medical expenses you incur as you seek revision surgery, among other medical interventions, can quickly add up to expensive amounts. Subsequently, this can cause unforeseen financial strain because of the reasonable expectation you held that the hip replacement would serve you for an extended duration.
Hence, the judge accepts claims to recover for medical expenses, provided you include verified evidence in support of having sought the professional services. For example, you can give X-ray images and CT scans showing the effects of the defective implant in your body. You can also include prescription notes, surgery reports, and in-patient medical bills to show the financial constraints you faced from having to undergo revision surgery.
Loss of Wages or Earning Potential
Moreover, you can seek damages for your loss of earning potential and wages if the defective hip implant immobilizes you. This is because your inability to walk or move may have limited your availability at work. Further, additional surgery may have meant taking extra time off your business or employment, reducing your wages. You are therefore entitled to recover for the losses.
Pain and Suffering
The pain and suffering you experienced is also a valid consideration when awarding damages, as it reduces your quality of life for some time. When presenting this claim, you can include doctor’s reports or any other relevant information to demonstrate your hardships from having a defective hip implant.
Contact a Defective Product Lawsuit Expert Near Me
When you or a loved one suffers the adverse effects of a defective hip implant, you may have to deal with the consequences for the rest of your life. The bad hip implant can expose you to additional losses and physical pain, entitling you to recover from the harm. To do so, you want to partner with a skilled and experienced defective product lawsuit professional who understands the legal rules applicable. Upon consulting, they will guide you through the legal requirements to satisfy and what to expect during the lawsuit.
With Consumer Alert Now, you will work with some of the most experienced attorneys specializing in defective product lawsuits. Our years of experience handling these cases make us highly dependable, and you can expect beneficial interactions with the assigned attorney from our team. We are also ready to represent you in court during the mass tort lawsuit to give you the best chances of securing compensation for your harm. For more information on Wright hip implant cases, contact us at 800-511-0747.