DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland

About the DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland

The DePuy hip recall in Ireland of the ASR Articular Surface Hip Replacement System and the ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement System was initiated by DePuy Orthopaedics in August 2010 after a “higher than expected” failure rate was identified by medical authorities in Australia and confirmed by data collected from the UK National Joint Registry.

The high failure rate of the recalled faulty metal on metal hip devices was due to the wide head of the implants releasing microscopic metallic particles when friction occurred between the head of the device and the cup into which it fitted. The metal particles damaged the bone and tissues surrounding the recalled metal on metal hip devices and made the implants unstable.

Injuries including metallosis, inflammation, hip pain and rashes were identified as symptoms of failing metal on metal hip devices, and recipients of the hip replacement systems identified in the DePuy hip recall in Ireland were advised to undergo blood tests and have an x-ray taken of their hip implant to ensure the integrity of their metal on metal hip devices.

In total, the DePuy hip recall in Ireland directly affected 3,516 people, and raised concerns for thousands more about their own model of potentially faulty metal on metal hip devices.

The HSE Attacked for the DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland

Whereas a comprehensive hip replacement screening process had already been established in the UK, no such program existed to cope with the DePuy hip recall in Ireland. When the full effect of the DePuy hip recall in Ireland became known, questions were asked by the Oireachtas Health Committee about why the Health Service Executive (HSE) and Irish Medicines Board (IMB) had not acted sooner and withdrawn the faulty metal on metal hip devices when problems were first identified.

The HSE came under further criticism when it was revealed in an RTE “PrimeTime” program that, one year after the DePuy hip recall in Ireland was announced, a third of all patients identified with a faulty DePuy metal on metal hip device were still waiting for revision surgery. Chief Executive of the Irish Medicines Board, Pat O´Mahony, acknowledged that there was a grave problem in providing potential patients with information — however HSE representative, Bill Curtain, chose to disagree.

The HSE, it was claimed, was providing recipients of the DePuy hip recall devices with plenty of information on its web site and through other medical channels. Mr Curtain had obviously neglected to consider that not every recipient of a faulty metal on metal hip devices had web access and, if they had, they would have seen that the HSE advocated patients sign away their legal right to compensation for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland.

Will the HSE Pay Compensation for the DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland?

Inasmuch as there is evidence that both the HSE and IMB were guilty of gross negligence, compensation claims for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland are being made under the Consumer Protection Act 2007. There are two reasons for this:-

1. DePuy Orthopaedics have already acknowledged liability for injuries caused to patients by their faulty metal on metal hip devices, whereas the HSE have not. DePuy Orthopaedics have already made an offer of compensation for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland which covers the cost of blood tests and x-rays, revision surgery if necessary and any financial costs associated with attending hospital for tests or surgery.

2. DePuy Orthopaedics had an income in 2010 of 5.4 billion dollars. This is nearly a third of the entire budget allocated to health services in Ireland for the same year (14.83 billion Euros). It is highly likely that a claimant seeking compensation for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland is going to receive a more adequate compensation settlement from a wealthy multi-national company than a cash-strapped and under-resourced health service.

DePuy Orthopaedics´ parent company — Johnson and Johnson — had worldwide sales in the fourth quarter of 2011 of 16.26 billion dollars and have already allocated 3 billion dollars for compensation claims due to the DePuy faulty metal on metal hip devices being processed in the United States.

Why Not Accept the Offer for the DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland?

Although patients are at liberty to accept the offer of compensation for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland, most of the money will go directly to the HSE. The only financial “gain” a claimant will see from this offer is a refund of any travel and accommodation costs to attend hospital appointments, help with childcare costs if applicable and any loss of income while the patient is undergoing revision surgery. There is no consideration in the DePuy Orthopaedics offer of compensation for:-

  • The pain and suffering a claimant has experienced before, during and after revision surgery,
  • The “loss of amenity” attributable to a faulty metal on metal hip device,
  • Loss of income before or after revision surgery, lost opportunities for promotion, overtime and pension contributions, and
  • The psychological injury of knowing that revision surgery may not remove all the metal debris from a person´s body, and that they may later suffer a health issue due to “system toxicity”.

Depending on a claimant´s personal circumstance, there may be many more considerations which should be included in a compensation claim for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland, and this is why — if you have been diagnosed with an injury attributable to a faulty metal on metal hip device – it is in your best interests to discuss your situation directly with an experienced medical negligence solicitor at the earliest possible opportunity.

Making a Claim for the DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland

Compensation claims for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland are being dealt with by DePuy´s loss adjusters (a company called Broadspire) and there is no need to submit an application for assessment to the Injuries Board. Instead, your solicitor will register your claim with the company, who in turn will send you a medical mandate form. The form is very similar to the one being advocated by the HSE after the DePuy hip recall in August 2010, so should only be completed with the assistance of a solicitor.

The form allows DePuy Orthopaedics access to your relevant medical notes in order that they can make their own assessment of your compensation claim for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland. Your solicitor should delete any parts of the medical mandate form which relate to the surrender of the faulty DePuy metal on metal hip device, as the hip replacement may be required as evidence if litigation is required in court.

Your solicitor should also remove any clauses in which you are required to relinquish future claims against DePuy Orthopaedics in the event you sustain future health problems associated with the DePuy hip recall in Ireland. Once the form is returned to Broadspire, their own investigation into your claim will begin. Your claim for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland may take a little time to resolve, as there are 3,516 people at high risk of sustaining an injury due to DePuy Orthopaedic´s negligence.

More Information on the DePuy Hip Recall in Ireland

If you feel that you have sustained an injury due to a faulty metal on metal hip device, or would like more information on the DePuy hip recall in Ireland, you are invited to call our Legal Advice Centre and speak directly to an Irish solicitor familiar with the DePuy hip recall in Ireland. Our solicitor will be able to answer any questions you may have, provide information about the latest developments in the case against DePuy and assess whether you are entitled to claim compensation for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland.

There is no charge for using this service, and you do not place yourself under any obligation to proceed with a claim for DePuy hip recall compensation just by speaking with one of our solicitors. Our lines our open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, and you can also take advantage of our call-back service if it is not a convenient time to talk with us right now. Although compensation claims for the DePuy hip recall in Ireland are being pursued under product liability law, nobody will understand the consequences of a failed metal on metal hip device better than an Irish medical negligence solicitor.