Have you suffered an early failure of a DePuy Orthopaedics knee replacement device? Premature failure of a knee implant can lead to severe injuries, as well as the need for painful revision surgery and rehab. Recovery from a failed joint implant such as a DePuy knee replacement can take as long as six months. If your DePuy knee implant failed after just a few years, we want to hear from you today. Our DePuy knee replacement failure lawyers are offering free legal consultations to anyone who believes they were a victim of a faulty knee implant. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
If your implant failed too early, we urge you to contact our DePuy knee replacement lawyers today to protect your legal rights. In the past, DePuy knee implant recalls have been issued for various reasons. In 2001 for example, the British government’s Medical Devices Agency issued a recall of knee implant Hylamer liners made by DePuy that had been sterilized with gamma radiation in air. The recall was conducted after a study showed that patients were showing a high failure rate -67.6 % within five years. That was thirteen times the expected failure rate for the device. The use of gamma radiation in air is known to increase the risk of oxidation, which can make an implant brittle and prone to breaking down. Because of this risk, manufacturers have begun using ethylene oxide, or gas plasma, to sterilize components.
In 2008, DePuy issued another recall on its LCS Knee Orthopedic Knee Implant – Meniscal bearing insert. This product is intended to replace a knee joint in order to relieve pain and restore function to the knee. The reason for the recall was that the product was not labeled properly and mis-etched as to size. In 2009, DePuy issued an international recall of the LCS Duofix™ Femoral Component (all lots). (This recall occurred outside the U.S., as the component has not been approved for sale by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.) In its recall notice, the company said it identified increased revision rates associated with the LCS Duofix™ Femoral Component, predominantly in Australia. The Australian revision rate in 2009 was 1.45% and the overall global revision rate with the LCS Duofix™ femoral component in 2009 was 0.57%.
Symptoms of Knee Implant Failures
How do you know if your DePuy implant is failing? If you experience any of the following symptoms past the normal knee implant surgery recovery period, you should contact your doctor immediately:
- Loosening and Instability: If your knee “gives out” when you stand or put weight on it, or you experience hyper-mobility (your knee is prone to moving unnaturally – backwards or sideways), something is likely wrong. This condition is worsened when the surrounding ligaments become inflamed as well and lose their tension.
- Swelling: This is generally due to inflammation of the knee lining or synovium, which, in turn, causes increased production of fluid as a response to irritation. When the body cannot absorb the amount of fluid produced the effusion or accumulation causes swelling.
- Heat or Warmth in the Knee: This is a normal sensation for several months after knee surgery, but if it persists or comes back, there is a problem.
- Pain: This may manifest as a minor soreness or it can be an acute, severe pain that presents upon motion or as a constant throbbing.
If your doctor determines that your DePuy knee implant has failed, you will likely have to undergo revision surgery. Revision knee surgery is much more difficult than initial implantation and is often complicated by bone loss.