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Don’t Sign Away Your Rights! What Your Doctor Doesn’t Know About DePuy Hip Implant Settlements

In 2010, the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System was recalled because about 12 percent of those who received the implant needed revision surgery within two years. That failure rate was twice the average for hip replacements. The recall was due to a design defect that could cause pain and difficulty walking. But, there are other problems with the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System.

The DePuy ASR XL Acetabular System is made of a chromium-cobalt alloy. Both chromium and cobalt are heavy metals that can cause severe health effects in the body.

If you received an ASR XL Acetabular System, chances are that your doctor has advised you of the risk of cobalt poisoning and has informed you that DePuy is offering to pay for hip revision surgery. He may have recommended that you agree to this procedure.

Your doctor knows what is best for your health, but he may not understand that agreeing to DePuy's hip revision offer means that you waive your legal rights and give Johnson & Johnson, the parent company of DePuy, access your medical records.

DePuy’s offer to cover revision surgery for patients fitted with the ASR XL Acetabular System is not as generous as it sounds. While the company has offered to pay for the surgery and “reasonable and customary costs of monitoring and treatment” associated with the recall, they have also asked to be given access to medical records in exchange. They say that this will help them to understand problems with the hip replacement system. While this may be true, DePuy used medical records involved in a similar recall to place the blame for the malfunction on the patients that were injured by the device. In some cases the patient was blamed for being overweight. In others, the patient was blamed for being too active. If the patient couldn’t be blamed, DePuy insisted that the joint was put in incorrectly.

What can you do? You are not required to release your medical information to DePuy. Before undergoing DePuy hip revision surgery, contact a personal injury lawyer. Your attorney will look over the paperwork associated with the surgery. He’ll let you know how you can avoid signing away your medical records and your rights.

If you’ve already signed a medical release form, don't panic. Your lawyer may be able to intervene.

If you have questions about the ASR XL Acetabular System hip recall, your own rights or are worried that you’ve already given DePuy access to your medical records, contact our experienced injury attorneys at 800-800-5678. The initial consultation is free.

Jason F. Abraham
Managing Partner, Hupy and Abraham