Stryker Hip Lawsuit Demands Punitive Damages
Plaintiff John T. Roberts is demanding both compensatory and punitive damages from Stryker Orthopaedics, claiming the company designed, manufactured and sold a defective hip device known as the Trident acetebular shell, which caused him to suffer permanent injuries. The Stryker Trident hip lawsuit was originally filed in Jefferson County Circuit Court, but the defendants had the action removed to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky, where the company will defend claims of negligence and breach of warranties.
The claimant is joined by his wife, Claudia Roberts, who is seeking damages for loss of spousal consortium.
Stryker Trident recall issued in 2008
The plaintiff was implanted with hip components in 2006 and 2007 that were later subject to a widespread Stryker hip recall, for failure of the acetebular shells to achieve “biological fixation” with recipients’ bones. According to court documents, the Stryker Trident recallwas prompted by an FDA investigation of the company’s Ireland facilities, which revealed several violations of good manufacturing practices.
On March 22, 2011, John Roberts was forced to endure hip revision surgery on both hips to address a marked loosening and lack of bony in-growth on both Trident implants in his left and right hips. At the time, the plaintiff alleges that neither he nor his surgeon were aware of the FDA’s warning letters to Stryker, nor of the recall on the devices. The Stryker hip lawsuit states that Roberts did not become aware of the connection until September of 2012, when he happened upon information on Trident manufacturing defects and the subsequent recall.
Stryker Accolade hip stem fractures, forcing another revision surgery
In addition to the Stryker hip problems and injuries from the Trident acetebular cup, the plaintiff also experienced a medical emergency in 2013 when his Accolade hip stem, also made by Stryker, suddenly broke, causing Roberts agonizing pain. The hip stem had been implanted in his left hip in 2006, and according to allegations, also suffered design defects, as it should not have spontaneously fractured at the femoral stem. Post-marketing reports have indicated that other patients have suffered similar experiences with the TMZ stems, but Stryker has yet to issue a recall on these components. Roberts was again on the operating table in 2013, this time to have the broken hip stem removed and replaced.
Causes of action listed in the Stryker Trident hip lawsuit include negligence, strict liability and breach of warranty. John Roberts alleges the defective nature of the Stryker hip components have caused him serious physical injuries, resulting in past and ongoing medical expenses, lost wages, and a diminished earning capacity. He further argues that he has endured physical and mental pain and suffering and a loss of enjoyment of life.
Stryker Trident claims coordinated in state court
While this particular lawsuit is proceeding in federal court, cases brought in New Jersey state court have been consolidated under Judge Carol E. Higbee. The Stryker Trident multi-county litigation (MCL) was formed to better manage all pretrial processes for similar claims involving the recalled devices. Among the complications cited by plaintiffs are:
- Premature loosening
- Fractured or shattered devices
- Bone chipping
- Abnormal bone growth
- Device failure
- Loud squeaking and popping noises
- Bone loss
- Stryker, Accolade TMZF http://www.stryker.com/en-us/products/Orthopaedics/HipReplacement/Primary/Pressfit/AccoladePressfit/index.htm
- Stryker, Trident Acetabular Cup System, http://www.stryker.com/en-us/products/Orthopaedics/HipReplacement/Acetabular/Tridentacetabularcupsystemprimary/index.htm
- FDA, Class 2 Recall Trident Acetabular Hip System, http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfres/res.cfm?id=74832