May 24, 2017
As Stryker Orthopaedics undergoes steps to finally put their Rejuvenate and ABG II lawsuits in the past, the lawsuits against the company regarding their Stryker LFIT V40 femoral head are picking up steam. In the most recent development, a judge has been appointed by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) to oversee the charges against the hip implant manufacturer. Meanwhile, as the proceedings are organized, new cases continue to be filed involving the Stryker LFIT V40,
Meanwhile, as the proceedings are organized, new cases continue to be filed involving the Stryker LFIT V40, a femoral head used in hip replacements that have since been recalled.
Stryker LFIT V40 Judge Chosen Over Judges from Previous Stryker MDLs
Judge Indira Talwani, in the District of Massachusetts, was chosen by the JPML to preside over the Stryker LFIT V40 femoral head MDL. Her appointment comes despite her relatively short time on the bench and the possibility of appointing one of the judges who worked on Stryker’s $1 billion settlement concerning their Rejuvenate and ABG II hip implant devices. Still, attorneys have expressed confidence in her handling of the case.
Appointed by Barack Obama in 2014, Judge Talwani is a graduate of Harvard and the University of California, Berkeley. In addition to the Stryker LFIT V40 cases, Judge Talwani has also been considered as a possible judge for an MDL case involving the online sports gambling site DraftKings.
Judge Talwani’s appointment to the Stryker lawsuits may come as a surprise to those who were expecting one of the U.S. District Judges involved in the previous MDL case against Stryker for the Rejuvenate and ABG II. Both Judge Donovan Frank, of Minnesota, and Judge Brian Martinotti, of New Jersey, were involved in that litigation, but ultimately were not chosen for the Stryker LFIT V40 MDL.
Date Set for Initial Status Conference
On April 21, 2017, Judge Talwani set a date for an initial status conference. The conference will take place on May 16, 2017, and Judge Talwani has already set an agenda, as well as asked for status reports from the counsel in the cases.
Centralization Expected to Bring in Additional Stryker LFIT V40 Lawsuits
Despite Stryker arguing against the plaintiffs’ motion for multidistrict litigation, the JPML determined the benefits to centralization outweighed any downsides.
One of the claims that Stryker made as to why consolidation was unnecessary was that there weren’t enough lawsuits to warrant it (the motion for multidistrict litigation cited six lawsuits and 27 potentially related lawsuits). This reasoning did not convince the JPML, who noted that there are more than 30 cases pending in 17 different districts.
It’s also believed that more Stryker LFIT V40 femoral head lawsuits will continue to emerge as the MDL moves forward under Judge Talwani’s watch.
Another Stryker LFIT V40 Lawsuit Filed in Texas
One of those additional cases may be that of a Texas woman named Betty Sadler who underwent hip replacement and was outfitted with a Stryker LFIT V40 femoral head, which she alleges led to a pseudotumor that required revision surgery.
In the case, which was filed on March 7, 2017, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, the plaintiff alleges that seven years after receiving the Stryker LFIT V40, significant pain brought her back to her doctor, who performed an MRI and discovered the pseudotumor. A pseudotumor is caused by two metal components rubbing against one another (as the Stryker LFIT V40 femoral head has been criticized for doing) and results in a mass that can also signal other health issues within the hip joint.
The Plaintiff underwent revision surgery on January 16, 2016, and, while operating, her surgeon discovered “significant metallosis inside the hip joint.” Metallosis is also known as metal poisoning and can occur from the friction of two metal components brushing up against each other.
Like many of the other plaintiffs who have filed lawsuits against Stryker, Sadler believes the company was negligent in the manufacture and marketing of the Stryker LFIT V40 femoral head.
Next Steps If You’ve Been Affected by a Stryker Hip Replacement
As Stryker LFIT V40 litigation moves forward, it’s important to take action if you received the device during a hip implant surgery and have been adversely affected. Familiarize yourself with the symptoms of LFIT V40 failure and with the official warnings and recalls on the device, and if you have questions or would like information on pursuing a case against Stryker, contact us for a consultation.