What are Signs That my Stryker Hip Implant has Failed or is Defective?
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC represents people with post-surgery injuries caused by medical malpractice from surgery including replacement hip and knee implant procedures and other types of professional negligence. Our law firm has extensive experience in resolving cases for our clients who had required revision surgery after receiving the defective implant before voluntarily recalled by the device manufacturer or forcibly recalled by the Food and Drug Administration.
Our attorneys are available to answer any legal question on how to receive the compensation you deserve if a functioning medical device injured your loved one. Should you have additional questions, we invite you to contact our office for a free review of your legal rights.
Stryker Implant Injury Information
It was more than a decade ago when Stryker Howmedica Osteonics Corporation submitted their application form to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval on the Rejuvenate artificial hip implant device. Since then, Stryker has faced thousands of lawsuits filed by angry patients who needed to undergo a revision surgery after their implant caused significant problems caused by corrosion and generated metal ions. Many of these lawsuits were resolved at trial, and through negotiated settlements, thousands more will be filed in the future as additional implants fail in the years ahead.
The defective hip implant injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC provided the facts posted below to assist families in making a better-informed decision list when seeking justice in taking legal action to obtain the compensation they deserve for their injuries.
The Need for an Artificial Hip
For many individuals suffering from hip erosion, severe arthritis, or other condition, undergoing total joint replacement surgery gives them the relief from the pain they need to live a healthy life. Unfortunately, medical device manufacturers have failed in their attempt to provide a safe and reliable artificial hip joint now that so many have failed long before the end of their life expectancy of fifteen years and more.
Many of the complaints filed by injured victims in the months or years after they receive their artificial hip involved implant devices manufactured with metal parts. These “all metal” and “partial metal” joints have significantly higher failure rates compared to devices fabricated with ceramic or plastic components.
Why Some Hip Implants Fail
Artificial joint replacement devices fail for numerous reasons including:
- Loosening – Over time, the synthetic hip components can detach from a secured area in the bone.
- Corrosion – Stryker constructs their implants using cobalt and chromium that can begin to corrode within months.
- Friction – The constant rubbing of components together when the joint moves can cause excessive wear and tear that produces metal debris and particles, causing inflammation of the tissue surrounding the joint.
Stryker joint implants fabricated of metal raises health concerns because of their unexpected failure rates. The joint's movement will eventually rub away the protective coating and cause the metal components to generate metal ions and release toxic metal particles as the implant denigrates. The release of metallic debris can produce adverse body reactions when the particles enter the bloodstream or inflame the surrounding joint tissue.
The Food and Drug Administration released case reports detailing the reactions caused by metallosis (metal poisoning). Some of these reactions included:
- Hypersensitivity – This reaction produces a skin rash.
- Cardiomyopathy – This reaction produces symptoms including fluid buildup bloating, swollen feet, ankles and legs, shortness of breath, and heart failure.
- Sensory or Neurological Damage like visual and hearing impairment.
- Kidney Failure that first displays itself as fatigue, loss of appetite, vomiting, nausea, and difficulty in sleeping.
- Thyroid Problems with identifiable symptoms including lower body temperature, unexpected weight gain, fatigue, and neck discomfort.
- Psychological Changes – This reaction creates problems with decision-making, learning, concentration issues, memory loss, and depression.
Defective Stryker Hip Implant Models
Many of the patients who have filed lawsuits against the Stryker Howmedica Osteonics Corporation had previously undergone an initial hip replacement surgical procedure that involves implantation of one of the following models.
- Stryker Rejuvenate (voluntary recall of all models in 2012)
- Stryker ABG II (voluntary recall of all models in 2012)
- Stryker Citation
- Stryker Meridian
- Stryker Accolade
- Stryker LFIT Anatomic V40 (voluntary recall in 2016)
- Stryker TMZF Femoral Stem
Common Warning Signs of a Failed Stryker Implant
If you underwent an initial hip joint replacement surgery that involved a total or partial metal implant device, it's recommended to visit your surgeon or orthopedic doctor regularly. The physician will conduct a battery of tests including x-rays, MRIs (magnetic resonance images), blood tests and a comprehensive physical examination. Not every patient with the defective hip implant will display even the most basic symptoms, even if their device is failing. Careful monitoring on a regular basis can identify a problem before it becomes out of control.
Our attorneys have prosecuted many hip implant failure lawsuits to obtain financial compensation successfully on behalf of our clients. The most common warning signs involved in cases we have handled include:
- Intense pain and ongoing discomfort in the joint replacement area and the leg, lower back, and groin,
- Inflammation and swelling surrounding the affected joint,
- Difficulty when walking, standing or rising from a seated position,
- Decreased range of motion in the affected leg,
- Limiting mobility when standing up, walking or moving the legs,
- Decreasing flexibility at the joint site,
- Recurrent Dislocation where the ball-and-socket structure continually fails. This failure involves a dislodged femoral ball from the hip socket when the joint is moved in certain positions or a traumatic event,
- Unusual noises including squeaking, creaking, popping, snapping or clicking in the hip joint area.
- Ongoing fatigue,
- Intense pain during physical activities or weight-bearing exercise,
- Limping caused by leg length discrepancies,
- Swelling and heat caused by infections where the skin and tissue are hot to the touch.
Many patients who have undergone hip replacement surgeries develop life-threatening infections, which is a severe complication that can grow in the hospital or at home. Some patients will not develop an infection until many months or years after their procedure.
The infectious bacteria are not quickly eliminated from the affected joint using antibiotics alone. An infection in the hip replacement devices can produce intense pain and the need for revision surgery because the surrounding tissue becomes inflamed, bone tissue deteriorates, and the hip becomes unstable.
Before the surgeon decides whether to perform a revision surgery, the doctor will consider numerous risk factors including the type of bacterium, the severity and duration of the implant-acquired infection, and the best treatment to correct the problem.
Treatment may require debridement where the hip is opened, the bacteria are washed out, and a joint liner is exchanged. In a debridement procedure, the metal implant component is left in place if it is still firmly attached to the femur and pelvic bones. This type of treatment requires intravenous (IV) antibiotics administered over several weeks to ensure that the body has been cured of the life-threatening infection.
The doctor may recommend staged procedures where the patient undergoes numerous surgeries to treat the infection directly or with antibiotics followed by a revision surgery to remove the defective devices and replace it with another implant fabricated with materials other than metal.
Greatest Hip Implant Failure Risks?
There are specific demographics that are more likely to develop a Stryker hip implant failure compared to all other groups. The individuals most at risk include:
Females of every age have a higher risk factor of potentially experiencing a hip implant failure. However, some women prone to develop osteoporosis that weakens the bone are more at risk of bone fractures as they age. The female pelvic area skeletal structure is significantly different from males. Childbearing women typically have wider hips and larger hip sockets that can cause an artificial hip implant to dislocate and loosen easily over time.
Studies show that women with metal-on-metal artificial hip devices experience faster implant denigration. The risk is elevated because the device's metal components are smaller and shallower than those implanted in men and do not accommodate the larger hip sockets.
Highly Active Young Men and Women
Some men and women with artificial hip implants have a higher risk of device failure. This group includes those who are highly active, perform heavy manual labor jobs or participate in rigorous sports activities, which over time might require artificial joint revision surgery. This surgery will remove the defective device and replace it with an implant not fabricated with metal.
Studies reveal that smoking plays a negative role in causing a Stryker hip implant device to fail. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, smokers have a significantly higher joint implant failure rate (9.1%) compared to the artificial hip joint failure rate of non-smokers (3.4%). Additionally, smoking produces other complications during the initial surgery and the revision surgical procedures that could include the development of blood clots, kidney failure, or abnormal heartbeat.
Overweight and Obese Patients
Some studies revealed that all obese and overweight patients are significantly more at risk than most individuals who underwent hip replacement surgeries. Overweight men and women usually have bigger thighs where their muscle and fat tissue pushed the upper thighs outward, causing hip dislocation by forcing the implant out of the joint socket.
How do I Know if I am at Risk?
Your unique health circumstances and how your body reacts to the artificial implant will determine the potential need to undergo a revision hip replacement surgery. If you are young, highly active, or older and at risk for developing osteoporosis, you might require a revision surgical procedure now or in the years ahead.
Some individuals with specific medical conditions including diabetes or obesity or those who have undergone specific surgical procedures before are more at risk of implant failure or developing life-threatening infections. We recommend that you visit your doctor or orthopedic surgeon a routine basis for a comprehensive physical examination and a battery of tests to identify many of the common symptoms associated with Stryker hip implant failures that might not be apparent to you.
Filing a Stryker Hip Implant Lawsuits
You may be ready to take the first step toward financial compensation if you have suffered injuries in undergone a hip implant revision surgical procedure. Our legal firm has successfully prosecuted many Stryker artificial hip implant failure lawsuits involving patients with joint problems just like yours.
If your loved one was harmed after they underwent a Stryker joint replacement surgery, their injuries might be the result of medical negligence or defective medical device. The product liability and medical malpractice attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC provide legal assistance to patients who have suffered injuries after undergoing surgical procedures. We provide every client with a “No Win/No-Fee” Guarantee, meaning if we are unable to secure financial compensation on your behalf through a negotiated out-of-court settlement or a jury trial award, you owe us nothing.
Contact our attorneys today to schedule a free, no-obligation case consultation to discuss the merits of your compensation claim. We will provide you with numerous legal options on how to proceed in federal or state court.
Our legal team accepts all personal injury case, wrongful death lawsuit, product liability suit and medical malpractice claim through contingency fee agreements. This arrangement postpones payments for our legal services until after we have successfully resolved your case through a jury trial or negotiated out of court settlement. All information you share with our law office remains confidential.
For additional information see the following pages:
- What Stryker hips have been impacted by the FDA recall, and how do I know if I have one?
- Have all Stryker hip implants been recalled, or just specific designs?
- Why have the Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II Modular Hip Neck systems been recalled?
- Should I hire a lawyer for a case involving my Stryker hip implant?
- Will I be able to afford hiring a lawyer to represent me in a Stryker Rejuvenate hip implant case?
- What type of legal actions are available to recover funds from Stryker?
- Why should I consider hiring a lawyer as opposed to entering the Broadspire program to have my expenses paid?
- What are injuries associated with defective Stryker hip implants such as the Rejuvenate and ABG II?
- If I require a revision surgery due to my defective Stryker hip implant, may I still collect damages?
- What are the risks associated with a hip revision surgery?
- What are the design flaws in Stryker hip systems?
- Is it true that Stryker hip systems can cause metal poisoning, and if so, what types of metals are contained in the Stryker hip implants?
- What types of compensation may be available in my Stryker hip implant case?
- Does your law firm have any relationship with the Stryker Corporation?
- How can I find a lawyer to represent me in my Stryker hip implant case?