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hip implant corrective surgeryIn August of 2010, a division of the Johnson & Johnson Company named DePuy Orthopaedics issued a hip replacement recall of their ASR Hip Resurfacing System and ASR XL Acetabular System. It is estimated that about 93,000 people around the world have an ASR System implanted in their hip as a result of a hip revision surgery.

The ASR hip implant systems were especially popular among younger patients, primarily because the system was marketed as being less vulnerable to dislocation following surgery. It was also considered more stable in comparison to other options available in hip revision surgery.  Unfortunately, problems with the metal-on-metal implant were reported almost immediately after they began being used.

Hip Replacement Failure

Johnson & Johnson and DePuy received reports over the past several years that the ASR systems had a potentially high rate of failure. While DePuy claims that the failure rate for ASR hip implants is about 12-13 percent after five years, others approximate that the failure rate could rise as high as 25 percent or more after seven years.

When an ASR system hip implant fails, patients must typically undergo an additional surgery, often referred to as a “revision surgery” or a revision total hip arthroplasty, to replace the failed implant. Often, hip revision surgery involves using bone grafts, which may be taken from another site in a patient’s body or from another donor.

Corrective Hip Implant Injury

As with hip replacement surgery, hip revision surgery can be very painful to undergo. There are many potential complications that may result from such an invasive operation, including infection, issues with anesthesia, pulmonary embolism, and deep venous thrombosis. Dislocation is also a common complication of a hip revision surgery because the tissues surrounding the affected bone and implant are weak, and the bone is generally fragile. One research group found that following revision surgery, the long-term rate of dislocation could be as high as over 7 percent.

“One research group found that following revision surgery, the long-term rate of dislocation could be as high as over 7 percent.”

Generally, a hip revision surgery has even less favorable outcomes than the original hip implant operation. Often, the procedure requires a longer hospital stay and a longer period of recovery due to the complexity and length of the second surgery, and frequently assistive devices, such as canes or walkers, may need to be used. Patients who have undergone a hip revision surgery usually report a smaller range of motion in the new implant than with the first, and there may be greater long-term discomfort caused by the new implant. Additionally, a second hip implant typically lasts only  about eight to 10 years, whereas first-time hip implants generally last about 15 years.

Anyone who has a DePuy ASR system hip implant is advised to immediately contact their orthopedic doctor or surgeon to have an evaluation conducted of their metal-on-metal ASR system implant to determine whether their hip implant has failed or whether it has caused other issues, including heavy metal toxicity and pseudotumors caused by metal ion debris.

The Los Angeles hip implant injury attorneys at Panish Shea & Boyle LLP are continuing their investigation  into the defective ASR system hip implants.  Currently, our lawyers are handling claims involving DePuy hip revision implants across the U.S. As more complications associated with the metal-on-metal implant come to light, please continue to visit our website for more information about the De Puy hip implant recall. You can also call us at 1-877-800-1700.

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