According to an April Order, the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas has amended an earlier Case Management Order to allow for the joinder of unrelated cases, permitting the claims of up to 150 plaintiffs to be combined into one single complaint. The amendment will allow thousands of DePuy Pinnacle hip lawsuits to proceed more efficiently.
Hip Implant History
In 2001, about 100,000 hip implants were being sought, primarily by older patients. But then metal device manufacturers, including DePuy, began to market metal-on-metal implants that were expected to double the lifespan of the average hip replacement, from 15 to 30 years, making them attractive and suitable for younger patients. But the metal-on-metal implants were not found to last longer, and generally only last two to four years, much less than doctors and patients were led to believe.
The DePuy Pinnacle Hip replacement is a total hip replacement system manufactured by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics. Approved by the FDA in 2000, the system was designed to provide increased mobility while reducing the pain of patients with damaged hip joints.
Some common side effects associated with DePuy Pinnacle hip replacement implants include:
- Groin, hip, and leg pain
- Swelling and inflammation
- Cup Loosening
Patients who have received the DePuy Pinnacle implants should also be aware of the symptoms associated with metal toxicity or metallosis, which include:
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Change in vision or hearing
- Feeling cold
- Weight gain
- Change in urination habits
DePuy Pinnacle Hip Lawsuit Allegations
The DePuy Pinnacle hip litigation was first established in May 2011, and more than 7,000 cases are currently pending. The claims all involve the metal-on-metal version of DePuy Orthopaedics’ Pinnacle Hip Replacement System that utilizes the Ultamet metal liner, a component that allegedly may shed dangerous amounts of toxic metal debris and placing patients at risk for:
- Chronic pain
- Premature device failure
- Pseudotumor formation
- Potential revision surgery to remove and replace the device
Due to the defective design of the metal-on-metal implants, a DePuy Pinnacle recall may come in the future but as of now one has not yet been made.