DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recall Lawsuit Filed in Ohio Federal Court

Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy Orthopaedics unit has been hit with another lawsuit over its recalled ASR XL Acetabular hip replacement system. The lawsuit, which was filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, seeks class action status on behalf of anyone who received a recalled DePuy ASR hip implant, as well as their spouses.

DePuy recalled the ASR hip implant system in August after data from the National Joint Registry of England and Wales showed that 1 out of every 8 patients (12%-13%) who had received the recalled devices had to undergo revision surgery within five years of receiving it. A hip implant should last around 15 years.

The recall includes the ASR XL Acetabular System, a hip socket used in traditional hip replacement, and the ASR Hip Resurfacing System, a partial hip replacement that involves placing a metal cap on the ball of the femur. Only the ASR XL Acetabular System was approved for use in the US. Around the world, approximately 93,000 people received on of these defective hip implants.

The Ohio lawsuit was filed by a woman who received an ASR XL Acetabular System hip implant in August 2009. According to the complaint, by the following March, the plaintiff began experiencing problems – hip pain, stiffness, popping and grinding sensation – that make walking, standing and even sitting difficult. It is likely that the plaintiff will now need additional surgery to have her DePuy ASR hip implant replaced.

The lawsuit seeks to determine whether DePuy should have known of the defects in the device prior to its sale and implant in patients, and whether DePuy failed to provide timely and adequate post-market warnings of the health risks associated with the its ASR XL Acetabular System. It also seeks to force DePuy to pay for the necessary tests and medical monitoring that will be required for anyone who has one of the defective hip implants.

The Ohio lawsuit is just the latest of many that have been filed in the wake of the DePuy ASR hip implant recall. Last month, plaintiffs’ attorneys motioned the US. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate all such federal cases in a multidistrict litigation in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey before Judge Susan D. Wigenton. The panel is expected to hear arguments on the motion in November.