Smith & Nephew Hip Lawsuit

Judge About to Gavel on Sounding Block
  • Numerous claims have been filed against Smith & Nephew for producing defective metal implant designs, which were used in many hip replacement surgeries.
  • Patients who had undergone hip replacement surgery with a defective Smith & Nephew implant are eligible to file a claim against the company in order to recover compensation for their losses.
  • All these lawsuits are adjudicated by strict liability, meaning there isn’t a requirement for a claimant’s representatives to prove the manufacturer’s negligence.
  • Up till July 2019, more than 587 Smith & Nephew hip lawsuits have been pending in the Maryland federal court.
  • The company announced a recall for 2,000 of these implant devices in 2016. The company also settled a few individual actions discreetly in 2013 over the R3 Acetabular Hip System.

After receiving a hip replacement surgery, you are hoping to recover soon and getting back to an active and healthy lifestyle again. However, instead of lasting for at least 15 years, a hip replacement starts breaking down in the next few years. After having an intensive metal-on-metal hip implant surgery, you wouldn’t expect it to cause further problems. Unfortunately, this is more common than you might think and typically happens due to the use of defective implants. As a matter of fact, numerous people have suffered from such cases.

Hip replacement lawsuits are claims filed against Smith & Nephew for producing defective metal implant designs, which were used in many hip replacement surgeries. As a result of these metallic implants, those affected had to undergo corrective surgeries. Moreover, metal fragments eventually grind off implants, resulting in severe side effects, such as metal poisoning. A significant number of affected people have filed lawsuits against the company with the help of injury lawyers.

If you or your loved one has undergone hip surgery, using one of the Smith & Nephew’s metal implants, then may you have the right to demand compensation for your damages, losses, and the suffering you had to endure.

Reason for Hip Implants

Hip implants are used in hip replacement surgeries to relieve painful joints. They allow a patient to lead a more active and painless life. During the procedure, a doctor removes the affected area surgically and replaces it with an artificial implant.

Smith & Nephew hip implants are used in these surgeries to either repair or replace parts of the patient’s hip, including their femur and hip socket. One of the most used hip implants by Smith & Nephew is the Birmingham Hip Resurfacing System. It comes with two different parts – a ball-shaped socket that is implanted in the pelvis and a semicircular cap that is placed on the top of their femur. These implants form a “ball-in-socket,” which mimics the natural functioning of a healthy hip. Both parts are made with a combination of cobalt and chromium.

Another hip implant by Smith & Nephew used in hip surgeries is the R3 Acetabular System, which uses similar materials and design. It also comes with two different parts – one is the ball-shaped socket implant, and the other is the femoral cap implant.

All of the hip implant designs by Smith & Nephew have created problems for patients, resulting in mass tort claims against the company.

Side Effects of Smith & Nephew Hip Implants

Smith and Nephew’s metal-on-metal designs have witnessed a higher rate of failure in comparison to other implant designs. According to a study, hip implants with a metal-on-metal design results in the patient requiring more surgeries to correct the issues caused by those implants.

Several patients have experienced many side effects with these implants, which include:

  • Broken or cracked bones around the implant
  • Instability of the joints
  • Dislocation
  • Problems in standing or walking
  • Mobility loss
  • Inflammation
  • Chronic pain
  • Necrosis (damaged or dead cells in tissues and bones)
  • Pseudotumors
  • Metallosis
  • Other complications requiring additional surgeries

Worst of all, since the metallic linings of these implants grind against each other, in most cases, it releases metal shards in the bloodstream and tissues of a patient, thereby resulting in metal poisoning. These issues led to the recall of several implants and resulted in increasing claims in the Smith and Nephew metal-on-metal hip lawsuits.

History of Smith & Nephew Hip Lawsuits

The complications and injuries suffered by the recipients of these defective hip implants were many, and since they didn’t have any control over their plight, several lawsuits were and are still being filed against Smith & Nephew. All of these cases claim that not only did the company produce defective implant designs, but they also neglected to warn patients and health professionals of the severe consequences of using these medical devices.

Manufacturers of medical devices are legally obliged to create their products in a way that they don’t cause any serious complications or unreasonable harm to patients. When these companies opt for short cuts and cost-effective ways for producing medical devices, it often results in the usage of certain materials that are dangerous to patients. Therefore, medical device manufacturing companies must be held legally responsible for the injuries and complications that arise from their negligence and adversely affect the lives of patients.

It’s important to note that several lawsuits have been filed against Smith & Nephew due to their decision to use chromium and cobalt metals in hip implants, which contributed to the defective design of the devices. The company had marketed its R3 Acetabular and Birmingham Hip Resurfacing Systems as being much stronger in comparison to conventional hip implants, which are created using ceramic materials.

However, the complications and dangers caused by metallic poisoning certainly outweigh the advantages offered by Smith & Nephew’s faulty medical devices. Many of the victims’ representatives claim that the trade-off of slightly stronger materials with a drastically higher toxicity risk was clear negligence of the company, which is why the company should be held liable for its actions.

Moreover, these cases also claim that Smith & Nephew were also negligent in warning patients and their doctors of the associated risks of utilizing metal-on-metal implants for surgeries. Without proper warnings, the concerned doctors were not equipped to make informed decisions regarding the right prescriptions for their patients. Therefore, the affected patients had no control over how they could have protected themselves.

Who Can File A Claim against Smith & Nephew?

Any individual who has undergone hip replacement surgery with a defective Smith & Nephew implant is eligible to file a claim against the company in order to recover compensation for their losses. However, you must prove that you suffered from financial, emotional, and physical damages from their implants.

Successful Smith and Nephew hip resurfacing lawsuits included all necessary documentation and a diagnosis by a medical expert who can offer their testimony to validate the medical claims. Every claim is distinctive to a certain degree as per the difficulties experienced by a patient after surgery.

The company is predicted to face around 500 and more lawsuits for the injuries and issues caused by these defective medical devices. While the federal Smith & Nephew R3 Acetabular hip lawsuit has been merged into Multidistrict Litigation (MDL), various other lawsuits are being filed in different courts.

If you or your loved one has been experiencing complications after getting hip surgery that involved the use of Smith & Nephew medical devices, then you should seek the assistance of a lawyer. However, it is still possible that various patients with defective implants have not yet experienced any side effects. That doesn’t mean that there won’t be any future medical issues. Therefore, you must get a comprehensive medical evaluation done as soon as possible, as time is crucial for all potential legal actions.

All these lawsuits are adjudicated by strict liability, meaning there isn’t a requirement for a claimant’s representatives to prove the manufacturer’s negligence. The primary thing to establish is that a defective medical device was used during an individual’s hip surgery and led to their injuries or other complications. You can file a claim against the company if you are suffering from the following complications due to their hip implants:

  • Revision surgery or hip replacement surgery
  • Flu-like syndromes
  • Problems with standing or walking
  • Mobility issues or hip dislocation
  • Inflammation or infection
  • Increasing or constant pain

The settlement award or compensation is based on medical documentation and the testimonials of individual patients. Previous claimants in Smith & Nephew hip lawsuits have been able to recover damages, which included:

  • Past medical expenses, which includes the cost of care and corrective surgeries that were needed to treat complications after the insertion of defective implants
  • Expected medical expenses in the future that might be linked with long-term problems or the impact of metal toxicity
  • Professional repercussions or lost wages due to debilitating injury and a long period of recovery
  • Compensation for one’s inability to work in the future due to complications
  • Loss of consortium experienced by a patient’s family
  • Pain and suffering
  • Other financial damages

Additionally, since the defective design warnings by the company were egregious, the court might also add punitive damages. However, to get a better idea of the compensation and damages recovery in a Smith & Nephew claim, it is recommended to consult with our lawyers for guidance.

How Long Do I Have To File a Smith & Nephew Hip Lawsuit?

The Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) passed safety communication in January 2013 to advise the general public and health care professionals about the potential risks linked with metal-on-metal hip implants. These defective implants have been connected to severe consequences, as mentioned above, for many years. The recipients of these defective implants are advised to consult their attorneys immediately to file a Smith and Nephew hip recall lawsuit before their case gets dismissed due to time limitations.

These laws vary significantly among states and specify the rules to determine when the statute of limitations begins. If you fail to file your lawsuit within the Statute of Limitations, your lawsuit will likely be dismissed. For questions and guidance regarding the statute of limitations, you should contact an experienced attorney.

In 2018, Smith & Nephew lawyers passed a motion to dismiss several cases filed under MDL, claiming they were time-barred. The statute of limitations can be a major defense for the companies being sued for injuries caused by defective products. The judge on the case, fortunately, dismissed this motion stating that most of the cases were from states with the ‘discovery rules.’

The discovery rule specifies the time limitations for filing a product liability case. Usually, the clock doesn’t start ticking against the claimant until they discover, or should have reasonably discovered that they were injured due to a faulty product. Therefore, it is crucial to act fast.

You should consult with your lawyer to determine the statute of limitations in your state and immediately file a claim against the company. Get a medical checkup done to determine any potential complications if you haven’t experienced any side effects yet.

How Many Lawsuits Have Been Filed Against Smith & Nephew?

Up till July 2019, more than 587 Smith & Nephew hip lawsuits have been pending in the Maryland federal court. With a vast number of individuals suffering from complications and injuries after receiving defective implants in their hip surgeries, Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) was formed in April 2017, and the initial 28 cases were combined by the U.S. Judicial Panel. It includes lawsuits from all over the country and also has the potential to add more new cases in the coming months.

The MDL helps in streamlining these lawsuits with similar elements and consolidates them in one federal district court for pretrial procedures, which include:

  • Admissibility of evidence challenges
  • Motions to dismiss
  • Deposition of victims, witnesses, and experts
  • Evidence discovery

Lawsuits have been filed against Smith & Nephew for the modular Readapt Revision Femoral Hip. The company announced a recall for 2,000 of these implant devices in 2016. The company also settled a few individual actions discreetly in 2013 over the R3 Acetabular Hip System.

Hire a Lawyer to File a Smith & Nephew Hip Lawsuit

Countless individuals have suffered and are currently experiencing complications as a result of these hip implants. It is important to try and hold the manufacturer liable for their negligence and recover compensation for the damages you sustained.

If you or your loved one is suffering from complications after receiving these defective metal-on-metal hip implants, and wondering how to file a lawsuit, you should consult our personal injury lawyers at Frankl Kominsky. Our attorneys have successfully recovered $100 million and more in injury and accident settlements. We can help you try to recover compensation for your past and future medical bills, lost wages, and special damages. 

We strive to hold Smith & Nephew accountable for their defective devices and their failure to warn patients and health professionals about the dangers of using these defective hip implants.

If you are unsure about whether or not you are eligible to file a claim against Smith & Nephew, then get in touch today with our attorneys. We offer no-obligation free consultations for anyone who has suffered from the side effects of receiving defective hip implants designed by Smith & Nephew.

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