Arthritis can turn into a debilitating disease, no matter the age of the sufferer. However, arthritis patients can be medically treated to help continue with the performance of daily activities. One such arthritic treatment method is a hip replacement implant known as A.S.R. or the “articular surface replacement,” and it is manufactured by DePuy, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson.
The A.S.R. product launched in 2003, yet it is noted that clinical trials were not performed before the A.S.R. product was released. During a period of six years, 93,000 patients received the implants. One-third of those patients were from the United States. However, doctors began to see issues shortly after the product launched. Several called for the product to be taken off the market but sales continued into 2009. In 2010, the A.S.R. product was removed from the market after a worldwide recall was issued.
In order to sell the product, DePuy acquired approval from the Food and Drug Administration by making claims that the A.S.R. was “substantially equivalent” to other metal-on-metal hip replacement brands found on the market. And according to cases in the United States filed by injured patients, a cover-up was performed by Johnson & Johnson and DePuy.
Surgeons from around the globe reported issues with the implant, only to be told that they had actually caused any problems associated with the device. Doctors who lodged complaints were told by the manufacturer that they were the only ones having problems with the device. The A.S.R. product consisted of a metal ball and a metal cup. With wear, these parts shed metallic debris and thus generated particles which damaged tissue or caused crippling injuries. Yet while proof of pain, disability, and even an increase in risk of cancer was available, the information was withheld. The New York Times reports that DePuy now faces nearly 12,000 legal claims in the United States related to medical issues caused by these articular surface replacements.
If you or a loved one has experienced crippling pain due to an arthritic treatment or product, please contact an Illinois defective medical device attorney today to discuss your case. Newland & Newland, LLP serves clients in Northern Illinois cities including Arlington Heights, Crystal Lake, and Libertyville.