California Smith & Nephew Birmingham Hip Resurfacing Lawsuit. A personal injury and defective product liability lawsuit was recently filed against Smith & Nephew, blaming the metal Birmingham Hip Resurfacing (BHR) system for premature implant failure.
The lawsuit also alleges dangerous metal blood poisoning and the development of pseudotumors or fleshy growths around the hip joint and hip muscles.
Lydia Constantini from California filed her claim in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.
According to Constantini, Smith & Nephew duped her by selling a defective metal-on-metal hip implant and then tried to cover up the design defectives.
What is a Metal on Metal hip implant?
Metal-on-Metal (MoM) hip implants consist of a ball, stem and shell, all made of metal materials. Metal-on-metal resurfacing hip systems consist of a surgically trimmed femoral head capped with a metal covering.
MoM hip implants were supposed to offer less device material wear, lower chance of hip dislocation and a lower chance of device fracture. But that was not true.
What is the problem with Metal on Metal hips?
Unfortunately, all of the MoM hip manufacturers have been plagued with a catastrophic defective design, in that there are two or more articulation points where the metal components can grind against each other.
This grinding action causes the release of toxic metal debris of cobalt, chromium, and titanium, which are the alloys the metal hip implant is usually made from. Metallosis occurs when the microscopic metal particles are released into the bloodstream causing an elevation of cobalt and chromium blood levels.
All of the major MOM manufacturers have faced personal injury and product liability claims over their defective design. Including DePuy ASR, DePuy Pinnacle (made by the medical device giant Johnson & Johnson), Zimmer Durom Cup, Biomet m2A Magnum, Stryker Rejuvenate/ABG II, Encore, Wright Conserve to name a few.
Smith and Nephew Birmingham Hip
The Birmingham Hip Resurfacing System was claimed to be a conservative approach to hip replacement in which an all-metal bearing joint is used to preserve, rather than replace, a patient’s femoral head and neck.
BHR System was approved for use in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration in 2006. Since its introduction, there have been over 175,000 BHR implantations worldwide.
Smith & Nephew is the latest hip replacement maker to face lawsuits over defective design resulting in personal injury. Smith & Nephew issued a field-safety notice on its BHR implants in 2015, saying the implants had a higher risk of dislocation, fractures and premature failure that needed surgery to correct.
In addition, the UK-based company recalled its R3 Acetabular Hip Systems in 2012 and its Modular SMF and Modular Redapt Revision in 2016, over serious complications.
Over 200 BHR Lawsuits
According to the over 200 lawsuits, the Birmingham Hip Resurfacing (BHR) system can fail prematurely causing pseudotumors, and metallosis. All of the lawsuits allege that Smith & Nephew knowingly sold the defective BHR implant and then tried to cover up signs of defectives.
Federal BHR Multidistrict Litigation
The US Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) last year, ordered all Smith & Nephew BHR lawsuits be centralized before U.S. District Judge Catherine Blake in the District of Maryland.
There have been no trials, verdicts or settlements in the BHR claims yet.
If you think you may have Smith & Nephew Birmingham Resurfacing metal hip device and are experiencing pain caused by metal corrosion or have suffered premature hip failure requiring full revision and emergency care, please call Dr. Shezad Malik Law Firm at 888-210-9693.
Shezad Malik is an Internal Medicine and Cardiology specialist, a Texas Medical Doctor (retired) and Defective Medical Device and Dangerous Drug Attorney. Dr. Shezad Malik Law Firm has offices based in Fort Worth and Dallas and represents people who have suffered catastrophic and serious personal injuries including wrongful death, caused by the negligence or recklessness of others.