Zimmer Metal-On-Metal Hip Replacements
Zimmer Holdings Inc. is one of several companies that began to manufacture metal-on-metal hip implant products during the mid-2000s. Zimmer and the other manufacturers were able to bring their products to market with minimal testing and over sight because they were classified as “substantially similar” to other medical devices already approved by the FDA. The FDA’s 510(k) rules permit this type of fast-tracked approval.
Metal-on-metal hip implant products were touted as a great solution for younger and more active people because they were supposed to last longer and provide a broader range of motion than existing hip implant products.
The British Medical Journal estimates that around 10 percent of all hip replacements that occurred between 2006 and 2009 used metal-on-metal products. For patients under the age of 50, the number of procedures using metal-on-metal devices was closer to half.
Unfortunately, not only did Zimmer’s products (and other metal-on-metal products) not live up to the hype, but they also started to fail and cause significant pain for those who had the devices implanted. Thousands of patients began experiencing problems due to the defective hip implant devices, and many have filed lawsuits against Zimmer and other manufacturers.
If you or a loved one suffered harm due to a metal-on-metal hip implant manufactured by Zimmer Holdings Inc., you could be entitled to compensation. At Roberts & Roberts, our experienced attorneys are assisting patients who have been injured by metal-on-metal hip replacements or metal-on-metal hip implants. Contact us today for a free claim evaluation.
Zimmer Metal Hip Implant Devices
Hip joint replacement procedures or hip implant procedures usually use the same basic process. The process involves attaching a replacement joint to the femur by hollowing out the femur and inserting a stem. The stem fits into a cup that is inserted into the acetabulum, which is a concave area in the pelvis.
The material that the cup and the replacement joint are made of can differ. For example, the replacement joint may be made of ceramic. However, metal-on-metal hip replacement products use a metal acetabular cup (the cup inside the acetabulum) and a metal replacement joint.
Zimmer makes a variety of different hip implant products, including:
- The M/L Taper Hip Prosthesis with Kenctiv® Modular Neck Technology
- The Fitmore® Hip Stem
- The Continuum® Acetabular System
- The Metasul® Metal-on-Metal Articulation
A large number of claims against Zimmer stem from a product called the Durom Cup, which was released in 2006 and subject to a voluntary recall in 2008.The Durom Cup is a one-piece socket device that fits into the acetabulum. It was made of a cobalt-chromium alloy and it had a special plasma coating designed to make the bone grow around it.
The replacement joint used with the Durom Cup was the Zimmer Metal-on-Metal Tribological Solution Large Diameter Head (LDH), which had a large diameter to maximize the range of motion. When the Durom Cup was implanted and bone growth stimulated, the natural growth of the bone was supposed to keep the Durom Cup in place.
In addition to having components that come loose, Zimmer’s metal-on-metal hip replacement products can also start to degrade and cause metallosis — a dangerous buildup of metal ions that causes metal poisoning. Pseudo tumors (clusters of fluid and metal pieces) can develop as a result, and patients can also experience damage to the thyroid, nervous system, heart,kidneys, liver and lymph nodes. Bone loss, called osteolysis, is also a potential problem caused by the breakdown of metal-on-metal hip implants.
Compensation for Patients Injured by Zimmer Hip Implants
If you or a loved one had a Zimmer metal-on-metal hip implant device used in your surgical procedure and you suffered adverse consequences, then you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
The damages suffered due to the defective Zimmer metal-on-metal products can be extensive, especially since revision surgery is often costly and painful and the effects of metallosis are devastating.
The defective medical device attorneys at Roberts & Roberts are currently investigating claims related to Zimmer hip implants and hip replacements. For a free, confidential review of your claim, call us today at 903-597-6000 or 903-597-6000 or contact us online. The call costs you nothing . It could mean everything.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine
- British Medical Journal
- U.S. Food and Drug Administration
- U.S. National Library of Medicine – “Failure of the Durom Metasul® Acetabular Component”
- MedSun — Newsletter #34, March 2009