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Illinois Hospital’s Experience with DePuy ASR Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Underscores its Problems

Filed March 22nd, 2013 edlieber1

The high failure rate of the DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implant seen among the patients at one Illinois hospital underscores the dangers posed by this and other similar hip implants.

A recent report from MedPageToday.com highlighted the failures of the notorious all-metal DePuy ASR hip implant. At Carle Foundation Hospital in Champaign, Ill., surgeons stopped using this specific metal-on-metal hip implant a full 18 months prior to its global recall in August 2010. Several specific reactions experienced by patients that had received the device there prompted the hospital to suspend its use in future surgeries, and now, more than two years after the recall, the facility continues to see patients suffering early failures of the devices that lead them to undergo a revision surgery to remove it.

Adverse local tissue reaction, pseudotumors, fluid in the capsule, tissue staining, and motion in the acetabular cup were all complications noted by surgeons examining patients they had fitted with the DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implant. These complications led to the decision to stop using the implant long before it was recalled by the manufacturer, and since then the hospital has continued to see patients who’ve experienced failures of the device at high rates, according to the MedPageToday.com report.

The report has drawn the attention of one leading national law firm that represents numerous victims of the DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implant. “This information further demonstrates that a number of patients are still suffering from the alleged defects of the DePuy ASR,” Daniel C. Burke, Senior Litigation Counsel at Parker Waichman LLP, said in a statement this week. “The facility stopped implanting this all-metal device a year and a half before it was recalled, and doctors are continuing to see a high rate of revision.”

As we’ve reported, the DePuy ASR hip implant was recalled from the global market in August 2010 and at the time, the manufacturer admitted that as many as 13 percent of the implants sold to that date had failed sooner than expected and led recipients to undergo costly and painful revision surgeries.

At Carle Foundation Hospital, the revision rates have been a little higher and continue even years after it last implanted a device in one of its patients. Chris J. Dangles reported at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons that 19 percent of the DePuy ASR hip implants at the hospital were removed between 2006 and 2009, prior to the recall. At the four-year mark for recipients, a total of 24 percent of all DePuy ASR hip implants were revised and about half of all women who had received this specific device there had it replaced, according to the MedPageToday.com report.

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