At the Los Angeles trial over the DePuy hip implant recall scandal, the court has heard that various design flaws were to blame for the high failure rate of the DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip device.
In 2010, Johnson and Johnson, the parent company of DePuy, was forced to recall 93,000 of the all-metal devices after it emerged that the product failed far more frequently than its competitors and even previous DePuy designs, leading to 10,000 US lawsuits.
Dennis Bobyn, who was speaking in support of 65 year old Loren Kransky who had his faulty implant removed in 2012, announced that the implants design was severely flawed leading it to fail at such a high rate. The biomedical engineering professor from McGill University added that the various flaws taken either individually or collectively made the hip implants dangerous to patients’ health.
When the recall was issued, J&J warned that within 5 years, around 12% of the implants may fail and thousands of claimants suffered extreme pain and discomfort as a result of the metal components in the device colliding an sending metallic debris into tissue around the joint.
Professor Bobyn offered some damning statistics relating to the ASR’s failure rate. DePuy had actually offered safer products in the past with its’ non-metallic Duraloc product only failing in 2% of after 5 years. Furthermore, an implant manufactured in the UK in the 1950s had only a 3.8 failure rate after 32 year. By contrast Australian data for the metal on metal ASR product revealed a failure rate of 44% after 5 years.
A video of a DePuy analyst called Paul Voorhorst was then shown to the court in which he revealed that DePuy was aware of statistics from Finland showing a 28% failure rate with this particular Johnson and Johnson metal on metal hip and UK figures showing a 27% failure rate.
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