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Hip replacement surgery is a procedure in which a doctor surgically removes a painful hip joint with arthritis and replaces it with an artificial joint often made of metal and plastic components. This is usually done when all other treatment options have not adequately relieved the pain. The procedure should relieve a painful hip joint, making it easier to walk.


In a total hip replacement (also known as total hip arthroplasty), damaged bone and cartilage are removed and replaced with prosthetic components.

  • The damaged femoral head is removed and replaced by a metal rod placed in the hollow center of the femur. The femoral stem can be cemented or “press fit” into the bone.
  • A metal or ceramic ball is placed on top of the bar. This bullet replaces the damaged femoral head that has been removed.
  • The damaged cartilage surface of the socket (acetabulum) is removed and replaced with a metal plug. Occasionally, screws or cement are used to keep the socket in place.
  • A plastic, ceramic or metal spacer is inserted between the new bale and the bushing to allow a smooth sliding surface.


Medical Studies: Toxicity

Studies conducted in the decade after metal hips were implanted have shown that the toxic microscopic metal particles produced from device friction can cause metallosis, or the build up of metal debris in soft tissues.

Metallosis Health Risks

Metallosis can lead to a number of health problems, including:

  • Bone or tissue damage
  • Implant loosening
  • Skin rash or hypersensitivity
  • Heart failure
  • Vision loss
  • Depression or cognitive impairment
  • Kidney impairment
  • Thyroid damage (neck pain, fatigue, weight gain).

The FDA and doctors have urged patients who’ve received a metal hip implant and experienced any of these symptoms to speak with their doctor. In some cases, patients will need revision surgery to replace the defective implants that are emitting toxic metal.

Patients Affected by Metal

1 million
Metal Hip Implants

Fail Within 5 Years

Unlike prior implants that used hard plastic, ceramic or even stainless steel components, these implants used advanced metals like cobalt, chromium and titanium for all major parts.

Unfortunately, however, this new technology turned out to be more harmful than beneficial to many patients. As these metal parts grind together under normal use, they produce tiny metal fragments that can be toxic to surrounding tissue or when released into the bloodstream.

Side effects range from bone and tissue loss to vision or heart problems. In many cases, patients must undergo painful revision surgery much earlier than expected.

Most troublesome is the fact that manufacturers didn’t properly test the safety of their own products or warn of the dangers before selling them to millions of patients.

Popular Metal Hips

Some of the most popular brands of metal-on-metal hip implants were:

  • DePuy Pinnacle
  • Smith & Nephew Birmingham
  • Encore/DJO Medical Hip Replacement
  • Zimmer Biomet’s Durom cup and m2A Magnum
  • Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II
  • DePuy ASR
  • Wright Medical Group’s Conserve.

Thousands of Victims File Lawsuits

Experts have linked severe metallosis side effects to all of these implants. By now, most have been recalled or are no longer in use. In addition, tens of thousands of victims have filed lawsuits.

The makers of the DePuy ASR, Stryker and Wright Medical hips have already paid billions of dollars in settlements to the patients affected. However, litigation continues for those who were implanted with Pinnacle, Smith & Nephew, Encore or Zimmer Biomet devices.

If you or a loved one received a Pinnacle, Smith & Nephew, Encore or Zimmer hip implant, it’s important to speak with a lawyer about the compensation available as soon as possible before your rights expire. Contact us today.

Latest HIP IMPLANT News & Recalls

Latest news on metal-on-metal hip implant lawsuits.

Lawsuits & Settlements

The Birmingham Hip Resurfacing (BHR) System was approved by the FDA in 2006 and has been used in more than 175,000 patients worldwide. Unfortunately, it has faced similar problems as other metal hips with metallic emission.

Smith & Nephew Birmingham Hip Lawsuits

The U.K. based Smith & Nephew issued a warning to doctors for its BHR implants in 2015, saying there was a higher risk for premature implant failure, bone fractures or dislocation. In addition, the company issued a recall of its R3 Acetabular Hip Systems in 2012 and its Modular SMF and Modular Redapt Revision in 2016.

In May 2017, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered that the growing number of Smith & Nephew Birmingham Hip lawsuits be moved to a specialized federal court in the District of Maryland under the direction of U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake.

The litigation is known as MDL 2775, IN RE: Smith & Nephew Birmingham Hip Resurfacing (BHR) Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation.

In March 2018, Judge Blake blocked an attempt by the company to dismiss claims, and has allowed lawsuits to proceed for injuries from any component of the BHR system.

Many of the lawsuits allege the defective hip systems caused early failure, tumors, complications, metallosis and painful revision surgery. As of September 17, 2018, 466 cases have been filed in the Smith & Nephew MDL court.

DePuy Pinnacle Hip Lawsuits

Although Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopedics recalled its Pinnacle metal hip implants from the market in 2013, the company has yet to agree to a total settlement with victims.

DePuy settled thousands of cases involving the 2010 recall of its ASR model hip implants, but has curiously chosen to fight similar claims over its Pinnacle MoM hips. As a result, the company has suffered heavy losses in the majority of trials so far. In the last three Pinnacle lawsuit trials, the following multi-plaintiff verdicts were awarded:

  • November 2017 – $246 million for 6 plaintiffs
  • July 2016 – $151 million awarded to 5 plaintiffs
  • December 2016 – $1 billion verdict for 6 plaintiffs.

The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has consolidated all Pinnacle metal hip lawsuits to the Northern District of Texas under U.S. District Judge James E. Kinkeade.

The litigation is officially known as MDL 2244, IN RE: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation. To date, more than 9,900 claims have been filed in this special DePuy Pinnacle MDL court.  

Based on the magnitude of verdicts awarded to Pinnacle hip victims so far, lawyers believe it’s only a matter of time before the company agrees to a full settlement. Fortunately, those affected still have time to file a claim.

Choosing a Hip Implant Lawyer

At Healthcare Advocacy Group, we’ve successfully worked to help thousands of patients who’ve been the victim of injury from defective medical devices or pharmaceutical drugs.

Our lawyers are no different: They’ve been at the forefront of metal-on-metal hip implant litigation since 2010 and have helped thousands of victims recover settlements from companies like DePuy, Stryker and Wright Medical.

Fortunately, help is still available for those patients that have suffered complications from the following metal hip implants:

  • DePuy Pinnacle
  • Smith & Nephew Birmingham
  • Encore/DJO Medical Hip Replacement
  • Zimmer Biomet’s Durom cup and m2A Magnum

However, it’s important to choose a lawyer that specializes in defective medical product litigation and has experience in federal MDL venues.

Our lawyers will offer to come meet with you in person, will handle every aspect of your case so that you rarely have to leave home or work, and will fight to maximize the amount of compensation you receive.

Best of all, the entire process from lawyer consultation to filing a lawsuit is free of cost to you unless you receive an award.

Contact Healthcare Advocacy Group today to talk directly with a lawyer and see how we can help.

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