Stryker has Settled ABG II Metal-on-Metal Hip Prostheses Claims--Koester & Bradley Answers the Most Frequently Asked Questions
The Stryker recall has been active for years, and a settlement has been reached, but many individuals in Illinois, particularly in the Peoria, Pekin, and Tazewell, Peoria, Mason, and Woodford Counties have not become part of the process to receive compensation for their injuries. Stryker initially notified health care professionals and regulatory bodies of its voluntary recall in 2012, but a great deal more has been learned over the past two years. Koester & Bradley is one of the most current and up-to-date resources on the internet relating to Stryker metal-on-metal hips due to the direct involvement with the Multidistrict litigation process. Unlike most firms, Koester & Bradley is operated by attorneys that handle cases directly and have a local presence in the Peoria area and across Central Illinois.
Who is Part of the Recall Settlement?
Patients who received a Rejuvenate Modular or ABG II modular-neck stem are encouraged to first contact their surgeon and make sure that they are monitoring their blood levels and pain levels. Patients uncertain if they have one of these products implanted should contact their surgeon or consult their medical records. It is still up to the patient, however, to be aware of what is happening to his or her health.
To protect your legal rights to compensation, it is also wise to consult an experienced and local attorney, whether or not your hip has been revised. The process necessary for receiving compensation is complex and at this stage, Stryker is aware of how to minimize its exposure.
The Recall leading to the Settlement.
This voluntary recall was initiated due to the potential risks associated with modular-neck stems in the summer of 2012, however Stryker was aware of problems with the system prior to then. Stryker issued an “Urgent Safety Alert” in 2012 to surgeons and hospital risk managers for the two hip replacement systems. Notably, this alert DID NOT go out to patients with the device. The alert listed the potential hazards in these devices, including: “Excessive metal debris and/or ion generation,” caused by “fretting and/or corrosion at or about the modular neck junction,” which “may lead to increased metal ion generation in the surrounding joint space.”
The recall came later in 2012 after pressure from the medical community and the legal community as well. In the wake of the FDA receiving more than 60 Adverse event reports from surgeons and hospitals, on July 6, 2012, Stryker recalled its Rejuvenate and ABG II hip components in the United States and stopped all global production and sale of the devices. At he urging of the FDA and under pressure from the consumer protection community, Stryker advised patients fitted with modular-neck hip implant systems who experience persistent pain to undergo medical evaluations, including X-rays, MRIs and blood tests, to check for dangerously high metal ion levels. Over the years following the recall, and after learning form other similar recalls, the most prestigious Medical journals and panels panels suggest that Adverse Local Tissue Reaction will generally require operative intervention and likely revision surgery with ceramic-on-metal modular junction replacement. This is true even of the patient is not exhibiting any symptoms. The company has already publicly stated that it expects the recall to cost them as much as $390 million – due in large part to lawsuits and legal expenses.
Since the stem components of a hip implant are driven deep into the patient’s femur, this type of revision surgery is considered particularly difficult for the physician and traumatic for the patient. In fact, there is a risk that the femur will fracture during revision surgery. These risks, known as compound morbidities, are the reason that patients that undergo a revision surgery are entitled to compensation. Too often, the individual is never the same after revisions surgery--but the risk of continuous metal poisoning is far greater.
A defective Stryker ABG II or Rejuvenate metal hip may result in the following symptoms which may manifest in varying degrees:
- Squeaking or popping of the implant
- Collection of fluid around the area of the prosthesis
- A condition know as Metalosis resulting in tissues decay