CALL (800) 863-5312 TO SPEAK WITH A hip implant injury Lawyer FOR FREE
More than 2.5 million people have undergone hip replacement surgery. Hip implants can reduce pain and increase mobility, making them a major health improver for the right candidates. However, sometimes the creators and manufacturers of the implants must recognize the failures of their medical devices and issue recalls.
Hip implant injuries are particularly painful, and it may be crucial for victims recovering from the exhaustion and financial strain of dealing with such injuries to hire a personal injury lawyer to get compensated. Hip implant injury attorneys have experience litigating such cases and getting results for their clients.
If you or a loved one has been hurt after a hip implant, call (800) 863-5312 to talk to the Zinda Law Group attorneys. Our experienced personal injury attorneys can give you a free case evaluation and advise you on how likely they think you are to recover compensation.
Common Reasons for Hip implants
The story of your hip surgery may have started with pain in your hip, nothing out of the ordinary. From there, it may have advanced to an inability to walk normally. These symptoms have a few common causes that merit your candidacy for hip replacement. The culprit is often either some form of arthritis or osteonecrosis.
People with hip pain may suffer rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when your immune system fights healthy cells in your body, mainly at the joints, causing inflammation. Osteoarthritis—the most common type of arthritis—occurs when the cartilage in your joints breaks down from wear and tear, which changes the underlying bones. Both types of arthritis can cause pain, stiffness, and swelling.
Osteonecrosis is the condition of low blood flow within the bone. Long bones such as the thigh bone and the upper arm bone are particularly prone to this condition. Since this condition leads to the degeneration of the bone, it can lead to osteoarthritis when it happens near joints.
What happens during hip implant surgery?
Hip replacement surgery has been around since 1969, so the procedure itself is fairly standard. Your surgeon prepares for the surgery by recording your medical history and current medications, taking an X-ray of your hip, and noting your hip’s mobility.
During the surgery, the surgeon makes an incision to remove the damaged tissue and cartilage around your hip. The surgeon then places the artificial socket device into your hip socket and replaces the ball of your hip with a prosthetic ball.
Types of Hip Implants
The type of artificial hip that you receive can vary, and each has a different set of risks and benefits. These implants can be made of the following materials:
- Metal-on-Polyethylene (metal ball with polyethylene socket or socket lining)
- Ceramic-on-Polyethylene (ceramic ball with polyethylene socket or socket lining)
- Ceramic-on-Ceramic (ceramic ball with ceramic socket lining)
- Ceramic-on-Metal (ceramic ball with metal socket lining)
Some people have received Metal-on-Metal implants (metal ball with metal socket lining), but these have not been approved by the FDA. The FDA has concerns about Metal-on-Metal hip implants, including how people might react to the production of metal ions as the two metal pieces slide against each other.
Your surgeon will let you know prior to your surgery that your hip implant will not last forever. Regardless of which materials your implant contains, it will need to be replaced eventually. However, if your hip replacement fails and injures you, you may be entitled to compensation.
Why do I hurt after my hip implant?
If you are hurt after hip surgery, it is likely a failure of the device itself. You may experience pain in and around your hip as well as a limited range of motion. There are a few ways that the implant can fail you, including wear and tear, dislocation, and a loose prosthesis.
Wear and tear are normal for a hip implant, but the implant should last a certain amount of time. If your implant did not last its duration or it fractured, the device is defective.
Dislocation of the implant can occur for a variety of reasons, depending on the surgeon, the patient, and the structure of the implant. It can be difficult to know why your implant dislocated. Similarly, a loose prosthesis can occur when the socket becomes unglued from the pelvis bone; this seems to happen more with male patients over the age of 60 with increased body weight.
Is it my doctor’s fault?
While a surgeon might commit malpractice in inserting your hip implant, it is more likely that the surgery failed due to the implant itself. This shifts the blame to the device manufacturer.
The hip replacements with the highest rates of failure include DePuy (Johnson & Johnson), which was recalled in 2010; Wright, which has faced around 2,000 lawsuits; Zimmer, which was recalled in 2008; and Stryker, which was recalled in 2012.
If your device manufacturer is not on this list, that does not necessarily mean that you cannot recover. It might be helpful for you to speak with a nearby personal injury attorney to determine how to proceed.
Do I need a Personal injury attorney?
In order to decide whether you should hire a hip implant injury lawyer, learn the steps that you should take if you are seeking compensation for your hip implant failure. You may find it helpful to hire an attorney so that you can focus on your physical and emotional recovery.
The type of evidence you might use in your case could depend on when you decide to file your claim. If you correct your injury through surgery before you file your claim (in many cases, this is the best way to gather evidence), then you may have pictures of the surgery site that show infection or other visible ways that the implant has failed. If the implant failed entirely and needs to be removed, you might be able to present it as evidence.
Visual evidence will also be helpful to determine how much compensation you could receive. You will also need to keep track of your medical bills and the time you missed off of work; these can help set an appropriate amount for the economic damages to which you are entitled, which we will discuss further later. There might be other kinds of evidence specific to your case that a creative, experienced lawyer might be able to use to push for a better settlement amount.
Negotiating a Settlement
Next, you will likely be going up against a large medical device manufacturer to negotiate a settlement. If your hip implant came from one of the companies listed above, it should not surprise you that such a company has already faced thousands of lawsuits similar to yours. They will try to get you to settle for as little money out of their pocket as possible.
Here is where an attorney can step in as your advocate and fight for the largest settlement possible with your claim. The lawyer will know how to help you answer deposition questions and interrogatories in ways that will help rather than hurt your case.
Cases usually settle at this stage. However, if you cannot get the settlement you deserve, it is possible that your lawyer could represent you at trial.
Getting compensated is probably the main reason you are looking to file your claim. While many people find it important to receive legal justice against an entity that has harmed them, a large part of that justice is financial recovery for the hardship they endured.
As a victim of a hip implant failure, you could be entitled to economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are empirically measurable, and they often come in the form of medical bills and lost wages from time off work. They vary to the extent of your injuries. If your injuries are particularly severe, you will likely be entitled to more compensation.
Non-economic damages are more difficult to measure because they include the pain and suffering that you experienced as a result of the injury. These can also vary with the extent of your injuries. If you can show that the implant’s failure caused you more pain and suffering than the average implant failure case, you could receive more in non-economic damages.
Where can I find a personal injury lawyer near me?
While you may now be considering hiring a personal injury lawyer, you might still be wondering, “Where can I find a personal injury attorney near me?” Fortunately, our skilled Zinda Law Group lawyers are at locations across the country, and they are ready to hear about your hip implant failure. Call our compassionate attorneys at (800) 863-5312 to schedule your free consultation.
Our hip implant injury attorneys are ready to fight for your rights and will take on the financial risk for you. Our No Win, No Fee Guarantee ensures that you will not pay us unless we win your case for you.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.