Cobalt Chromium Toxicity

Stryker Status Conference Update


On Thursday,  January 22nd, there was a status conference regarding In Re: Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II hip implant products liability litigation (MDL 13-2441). The conference occurred before Judge Donovan W. Frank in the United States District Court, District of Minnesota in St. Paul, Minnesota.

The conference began with an update concerning the two-step process of the litigation. The first step was having all cases formally registered with the Defendant and the settlement processor. All plaintiffs should have registered their claims whether the case was filed, unfiled, qualified, or unqualified. It was reported that the majority of potential plaintiffs completed registration successfully. The second step is the actual and formal enrollment of those individuals who are qualified and choose to enroll in the settlement. The enrollment process is more complicated than registration. The enrollment process opened on January 16th and ends on March 2nd, 2015. Depending on your individual circumstances, your attorney should guide you to make an informed decision as to whether or not to participate in the settlement.

The formal website for the Stryker Hip Litigation is www.strykermodularhipsettlement.com. If you are trying to settle your case without a lawyer, the site contains the appropriate forms to participate in the settlement.

Another status conference is set with a tentative date of March 27th.

Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff Wins 2014 Litigator Award


Kershaw Cutter & Ratinoff LLP named 2014 Litigator Award Winner. Having been conferred this prestigious National Award, the firm ranks among the Top 1% of all lawyers for: Consumer Class Action, Wage & Hour, Whistle Blower/ Qui Tam, Spinal Cord Injury and Medical Malpractice Litigation. 

BELLEVUE, WASHINGTON: JAN. 15, 2015 – Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff LLP,  a trial law firm located in Sacramento, California, was today awarded the prestigious 2014 Litigator Award for extraordinary achievement within the field(s) of Consumer Class Action, Wage & Hour, Whistle Blower/ Qui Tam, Spinal Cord Injury and Medical Malpractice Litigation.

Justly standing as the nations most coveted symbol of “Litigation Achievement”, this unrivaled annual honor recognizes trial lawyers {firms} who have attained extraordinary litigation achievement within one or more of 72 pre-defined “Practice Specialty” categories. Based strictly on “Verdict and/or Settlement” dollar achievement rather than peer popularity, the Litigator Awards are perhaps the most rigorous and openly judged trial law rating. Simply being nominated is to be set among the elite of the profession. Those awarded are generally considered among the finest trial lawyers in the nation.

To be Award Eligible, Nominees must prove achievement of litigation “Performance Benchmarks” that includes not less than:

a). Two verified “Verdicts or Settlements” of at-least $1 Million Dollars in any one Practice Specialty category within the preceding 5 year period prior to Nomination*, or

b). One verified “Verdict or Settlement” of at-least $5 Million Dollars in any one Practice Specialty category within the preceding 10 year period prior to Nomination**, or

c). One verified “Verdict or Settlement” of at-least $10 Million Dollars in any one Practice Specialty category within the preceding 20 year period prior to Nomination.

It is a feat achieved by fewer than 1% of all Lawyers, and truly a testament to each Award Recipient’s remarkable performance relative to peers.  Of the nearly 1.1 Million lawyers considered, only a select few per State or DMA, will achieve the distinction of being awarded annually in any given Practice Specialty*.

Winning a 2014 Litigator Award is a “Powerful Endorsement” of superior litigation achievement that provides discerning clientele {as well as referring professionals} with a strong reason to trust their case with an Award Recipient. Moreover, it offers a testament to their remarkable performance relative to peers.

To learn more go to: www.LitigatorAwards.com

Media Contact
Amy G. Harris
2014 Litigator Awards
(800) 992-9049
[email protected]

www.LitigatorAwards.com

Our lawyers are are known for obtaining victories in cases involving serious personal injuries, automobile and motorcycle accidents, insurance bad faith, brain and spinal cord injuries, dangerous drugs, defective medical devices, wage and hour claims, class action lawsuits, consumer fraud, product liability, whistle blower and false claims act matters, medical malpractice, elder abuse, asbestos injuries, and complex litigation.  View Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff’s Award Site

DePuy ASR Lawsuit Upcoming Deadline


Hi, I am Stuart Talley. I am the partner responsible for the DePuy ASR litigation. I am providing information about a category of case that is involved in the DePuy ASR lawsuit relating to non-revised cases.

There are numerous claimants with cases on file against DePuy who still have their ASR hip. These are considered non-revised cases. There is an upcoming election process specific to non-revised cases. The election must happen before January 31, 2015. The election relates to your individual circumstances.

There are some non-revised cases where people have minimal problems with the hip. For instance, they have slight pain, low metallosis levels, and their doctors indicated they do not need revision surgery. Those individuals can elect to have their case dismissed without prejudice, preserving your rights if your case is dismissed. Additionally, the statute of limitations on your case is tolled. Tolling the statute of limitations is essentially delaying the statute of limitations. So, from the moment you dismiss the case to the moment you refile, the statute is not running.  You can refile your case if you require revision surgery in the future.

The other non-revised case is unique. There are individuals with a DePuy ASR who require revision surgery but are unable to undergo revision surgery because of an underlying medical condition. Many individuals underwent multiple hip surgeries before implantation with the DePuy ASR. Their surgeons do not want to operate even though the ASR implant is leeching cobalt and chromium and causing damage to their hip. If you fall into this category, your case does not need to be dismissed. This case can potentially go to trial and possibly win. The key to a case for an individual with a health issue is proving the cobalt and chromium ions cause tissue damage in the hip joint.  You need blood tests every six months and imaging studies (e.g. MARS MRI) to show the damage. The MARS MRI is an MRI for patients implanted with metal artifacts and implants. It can show pseudotumors and other inflammatory responses in the soft tissue of your hip.

 

Wright Medical Hip Lawsuit Update



Hi, I am Stuart Talley. I am the partner responsible for the prosthetic hip litigation. I am providing an update on the Wright Medical metal on metal hip litigation. There are thousands of filed cases and they are consolidated in Atlanta, Georgia. The first Wright Conserve hip trial takes place on March 9, 2015.

Currently, there are multiple deadlines to prepare for the trial date. The first deadline is “dispositive motions”.  Dispositive motion is a motion seeking to dispose all or part of a claim. Dispositive motions are generally filed by the defendant(s).  The deadline for filing this motion is January 9, 2015. We fully expect Wright Medical to file a dispositive motion.

The next motion deadline regards a “daubert motion”. Defendants and plaintiffs can file daubert motions.  A daubert motion is a special type of motion. It is raised before or during trial, and seeks to exclude expert testimony and the presentation of unqualified evidence to the jury. There are certain circumstances where defendants and plaintiffs will submit expert testimony from doctors or scientists. The daubert motion is employed by a party to potentially exclude testimony. Daubert motion in these cases is important. Expert testimony is critical to a plaintiff’s ability to prove their case.

The next deadline is “motions in limine”. Motion in limine is a motion filed by a party asking the court for an order or ruling limiting or preventing the other side from presenting certain evidence at the trial of the case.

The daubert motions and motions in limine will be submitted at the pre-trial conference on February 26, 2015. The pre-trial conference is a hearing held before the judge. The judge typically rules on the dispositive motions, daubert motions, and motions in limine. After the hearing, you have a good idea how your case looks for the Wright Conserve hip trial. We are confident the motions filed by the defendants will be unsuccessful. The cases are very strong and we think the first case going to trial will be successful.

Wright Medical Hip Lawsuit: http://www.gand.uscourts.gov/mdl/wright_medical.html

DePuy Pinnacle Lawsuits Growing Despite J&J Victory


Court documents filed on January 1, 2015 indicate approximately 7,100 DePuy Pinnacle cases are currently pending in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas (In re: DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. Pinnacle Hip Implant Product Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2244). This is on the heels of a bellwether case in which a Texas jury ruled against Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli, a woman who claimed the DePuy Pinnacle hip implant caused multiple injuries, subsequently requiring revision surgeries. The jurors in federal court ruled in favor of J&J’s DePuy subsidiary on October 23, 2014.

The lawsuits are filed in a federal litigation regarding claims alleging the metal-on-metal hip replacements cause chronic pain, cobalt-chromium toxicity, pseudotumors, and other adverse side effects. However, the DePuy Pinnacle is still not recalled. Our firm represents numerous clients who allegedly suffer from the various problems associated with these devices. An increase in filings illustrate many individuals are potentially entitled to compensation secondary to injury from the implants. Our attorneys represent clients nationwide and provide free case evaluations on behalf of individuals with a potential claim.

The lawsuits involve the Ultamet metal liner of the implant. The Ultamet metal liner is primarily composed of cobalt and chromium, and lines the cup of the prosthesis.  The metal liner supposedly reduces friction between the ball and socket, and improves the fit between the ball and socket. However, this liner increases the risk of developing metallosis (metal ion poisoning).Friction between metal components in the hip implant result in a release of metal particles into the blood stream, damaging tissues surrounding the hip joint.

If you have a DePuy Pinnacle, you may be entitled to compensation for lost earnings, medical bills, pain and suffering, and other damages associated with the hip implant.

Wright Profemur and Conserve Plus Litigation Update


On September 15, 2014, approximately 800 claims regarding the Conserve hips were filed against Wright Medical Technology Inc. in the ongoing multidistrict litigation (MDL) in U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia (In re: Wright Medical Technology, Inc., Conserve Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2329). As trial proceeds, filings continue to grow on behalf of individuals who suffered painful injuries associated with the Conserve hips as well as the Profemur hip replacements. The injuries sustained from the Conserve metal-on-metal hips include early device failure, femoral neck fractures, and metallosis.

The Wright Profemur and Conserve Plus hip lawsuits allege the hips caused serious complications as a result of elevated levels of metal ions, like cobalt and chromium, released from the hips. Currently, the court has selected a case for the litigation’s first bellwether trial scheduled for March 2015.

Recent studies demonstrate patients implanted with the Wright Profemur and Conserve Plus hip replacement systems often experience early failure and femoral neck fractures. Specifically, both these devices are “metal on metal” hips and recently the subject of much controversy. Under certain conditions, metal on metal hips can release metal particles into the hip joint and surrounding tissue. When this occurs, patients may experience significant pain in the hip joint resulting from the body’s reaction to the metal particles released into the hip. This condition is known as “metallosis” and often results in permanent damage to the hip joint.

DePuy ASR Lawsuit: Election Obligation Deadline Extended


The U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio, filed an Order on December 24, 2014 extending the deadline for non-revised DePuy ASR plaintiffs who decide to either proceed with their case or voluntarily dismiss their case. Plaintiffs must notify the court by January 31, 2015 on whether or not they will opt into a tolling agreement with Johnson & Johnson subsidiary, DePuy Orthopaedics.

The tolling agreement for non-revised plaintiffs involves dismissing their case without prejudice; meaning the statute of limitations on their case is postponed until revision surgery occurs. The tolling of the plaintiff’s statute of limitations is then extended for one year from the date of their revision. After the revision surgery, plaintiffs may re-file the lawsuit within the tolling period and will not lose any of their rights. A plaintiff must update their registration status to indicate they underwent a revision surgery.

Non-revised plaintiffs who elect not to dismiss their case will be required to prove that they have suffered some type of damage as a result of their recalled hip.  Typically, these plaintiffs will fall into the category of individuals who require a revision of their DePuy ASR hip implant but suffer underlying health issues that make revision surgery impossible. Other plaintiffs have significant problems with hip replacements and their surgeon does not want to perform surgery. In these respective cases, plaintiffs can advise the court of their situation and may continue pursuing their case.

Lawsuit updates for metal on metal hips


Hip implants are touted as life-changing medical advancements designed to improve an individual’s quality of life. Unfortunately, in some cases patients suffer more pain and discomfort than expected from the devices. This is due to toxic poisoning from defective, metal on metal implants. It is commonly a result of Cobalt Chromium Toxicity. Thousands of hip replacement patients are discovering their hip implants are releasing cobalt and chromium particles into their bodies, whether or not they have symptoms.

The primary hips associated with this complication include Stryker Accolade, Stryker Rejuvenate, Stryker ABG II, DePuy Pinnacle, DePuy ASR,  and Biomet M2A Magnum.

Settlements continue for the following metal on metal hips:

Stryker

Stryker Orthopaedics announced a Settlement Agreement on November 3, 2014. The Stryker Hip Settlement Program may provide compensation to eligible patients who underwent revision surgery, replacing their ABG II Modular Neck Hip Stems and/or Rejuvenate Modular Neck, before November 3, 2014. Additionally, patients who cannot undergo revision surgery are possibly entitled to compensation; if the procedure was contraindicated for the patient prior to November 3, 2014.

The Stryker Modular Hip Settlement registration requires patients implanted with a Rejuvenate Modular hip or an ABG II Modular hip to submit basic information, pursuant to a court order. The court-ordered process applies to individuals regardless of whether they filed a claim or lawsuit, whether or not they underwent a qualified revision surgery (implant was removed before November 3, 2014), and whether or not they have legal representation. The registration process ended as of December 19, 2014.

You are not required to join the Settlement Program if you registered. However, if you intend on enrolling and participating in the Settlement Program, registering with the Claims Processor is not the same as enrolling in the Settlement Program. You will need to complete and submit an enrollment claim form as part of the separate Enrollment Process if you want to enroll in the Settlement Program. The Enrollment Process opens on January 16, 2015 and ends on March 2, 2015.

http://strykermodularhipsettlement.com/

DePuy

DePuy Orthopedics announced on November 19, 2013 they were initiating a voluntary settlement program in an effort to resolve approximately 8,000 lawsuits filed against them from the recall of their DePuy ASR prosthetic hip. Under the program, individuals who underwent revision surgery of their DePuy ASR hip prior to August 31, 2013 will receive a “base award” of $250,000 to settle their claims against DePuy. The base offer can adjust downward for a variety of health factors including the plaintiff’s age,  the plaintiff’s smoking history, the plaintiff’s weight, and the length of time the implant was present prior to removal.

Under the program, there is a separate fund available to provide adjustments upward for individuals who underwent two revision surgeries or complications following their revision surgery.  The extent of upward adjustments is extremely complicated and is based on a variety of individual factors.

The settlement does not impact or affect your rights if you have not had your ASR hip revised.  The unrevised cases will continue to go forward. Eligible individuals had until Sept. 30, 2014 to potentially claim $250,000 or more from the DePuy ASR Hip Settlement Program.

https://www.usasrhipsettlement.com/

Wright Profemur and Conserve Plus

On September 15, 2014, approximately 800 claims regarding the Conserve hips were filed against Wright Medical Technology Inc. in the ongoing multidistrict litigation (MDL) in U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia (In re: Wright Medical Technology, Inc., Conserve Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2329). As trial proceeds, filings continue to grow on behalf of individuals who suffered painful injuries associated with the Conserve hips as well as the Profemur hip replacements. The injuries sustained from the Conserve metal-on-metal hips include early device failure, femoral neck fractures, and metallosis.

The Wright Profemur and Conserve Plus hip lawsuits allege the hips caused serious complications as a result of elevated levels of metal ions, like cobalt and chromium, released from the hips.Currently, the court has selected a case for the litigation’s first bellwether trial scheduled for March 2015.

Recent studies demonstrate patients implanted with the Wright Profemur and Conserve Plus hip replacement systems often experience early failure and femoral neck fractures. Specifically, both these devices are “metal on metal” hips and recently the subject of much controversy. Under certain conditions, metal on metal hips can release metal particles into the hip joint and surrounding tissue. When this occurs, patients may experience significant pain in the hip joint resulting from the body’s reaction to the metal particles released into the hip. This condition is known as “metallosis” and often results in permanent damage to the hip joint.

Biomet

Approximately 2,000 cases are currently pending in the Biomet M2A Magnum Multidistrict Litgation (MDL) underway in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana. On December 9th, court documents showed the cases were filed on behalf on claimants who allege complications such as metallosis, pseudotumors, and other adverse effects secondary to the metal on metal design of the implant.

The court granted approval for a proposed settlement of the Biomet M2A Magnum lawsuits at the start of the year. The settlement would resolve hundreds of cases if finalized. The settlement terms were announced on February 3, 2014. Under the settlement, if plaintiffs underwent revision surgery (removing the hip) after the Biomet was implanted for more than 180 days from the index (initial) surgery, they are potentially entitled to a base award of $200,000. Court documents indicate the Biomet settlement would need to be accepted by 90% of eligible plaintiffs in order to be accepted.

http://www.innd.uscourts.gov/millermdl2391.asp

Our attorneys have extensive experience litigating defective hip cases. We can answer any questions regarding these settlements and offer free case consultations. We will focus on your case, so you can focus on yourself. 

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