Did DePuy and parent company Johnson & Johnson essentially play a game of Russian Roulette with those persons who became recipients of the DePuy ASR metal on metal hip implant? That’s what a jury must decide.
Panish Shea & Boyle’s Brian Panish posed that provocative statement during closing arguments which took place yesterday in Los Angeles. After hearing both sides, jurors must now figure out the level of financial responsibility owed by the medical device company in this case, which could be a bellwether for what future lawsuits can expect to achieve. This marks the conclusion of the first of thousands of lawsuits which accuse DePuy of putting forth an inferior product that was never properly tested.
Today was to mark the first day of jury deliberations. Jurors are being asked to decide whether the implantation of the defective DePuy ASR device led the plaintiff, Mr. Loren Kransky, to experience a decline in health. At trial, Mr. Panish pointed to Australian statistics which showed a whopping 44% failure rate for the device, and an internal analysis from DePuy itself shows an estimated 37% failure rate. Much has also been made of the device’s propensity to shed metal debris, a condition which the plaintiff argues has caused him to experience metal poisoning.
Mr. Panish asked that the plaintiff receive $5 million for his troubles, and he also believes $179 million in punitive damages should be assessed against the troubled company. Johnson & Johnson has recalled over 30 items since 2009, the DePuy ASR among them. 750,000 people across the country are thought to have received some kind of all-metal hip implant, but safety concerns have since diminished their popularity.