Stryker to Pay Over $1 Billion to Settle Lawsuits

Recently, Stryker Corporation, manufacturer of a metal-on-metal hip replacement system, agreed to a $1.4 billion settlement for injury claims. The Kalamazoo, Michigan-based company pulled its Rejuvenate and ABG II devices in July 2012 after advising physicians of a potential danger to surrounding hip tissue and additional health concerns.

By this time, however, thousands of patients had already been implanted with the devices and begun to suffer adverse health consequences. Some of the most common side effects reported include tissue and organ damage, pain, inflammation, metal poisoning, and other debilitating injuries.

As a result of these injuries, thousands of lawsuits have been filed against Stryker Corporation and other major manufacturers of faulty metal hip replacement systems. Eighteen-hundred of these lawsuits have been consolidated in a U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota with Judge Donovan Frank presiding over the hearings. New Jersey state judge, Brian Martinotti is overseeing approximately 2,100 lawsuits in Bergen County Superior Court in Hackensack. Depending on individual circumstances, each claimant that required revision surgery as a result of the defect is expected to receive approximately $300,000.

All plaintiffs have similar claims, blaming the metal-on-metal implants for high levels of metal debris in their blood, and alleging that the company was negligent in the device's design and safety testing. Additionally, the plaintiffs claim that Stryker was negligent in its duty to warn the public of dangers, and actually took measures to conceal facts about the risks. In an April 2012 "Urgent Safety Alert," Stryker listed the danger of "excessive metal debris and/or ion generation" in a warning to surgeons. Additional safety concerns include:

  • Metallosis
  • Osteolysis
  • Necrosis
  • Hip implant pain and loosening necessitating revision surgery

Compensation for Stryker Hip Injuries

Those who have been injured due to a manufacturer's negligence are legally eligible to recover compensation. Claimants in the Stryker hip replacement lawsuits are seeking damages for lost earnings and medical expenses including the cost of revision surgery. Some plaintiffs are seeking punitive damages to penalize the company for their grievous misconduct. Additionally, those plaintiffs still outfitted with the implants are requesting medical monitoring in an effort to detect unfavorable health consequences early.