Stryker Hip Replacements Recall

Camden, Sumter, Lexington, Newberry, Orangeburg, Columbia, Aiken SC.

Hip replacements are supposed to restore mobility to people who have suffered injury or wear to their hips. Unfortunately, we have recently learned that many of the hip replacement designs on the market are defective. On July 6, 2012, Stryker Orthopaedics announced that it was recalling all Rejuvenate and ABG II model hips, and terminate global distribution of them due to "fretting and corrosion" that could release toxic heavy metal fragments into the tissue, resulting in local or systemic reactions. The first symptoms of a reaction are new or ongoing pain and swelling around the implant.

This page contains some background information about the Rejuvenate and ABG II hip replacement recall, but it cannot tell you if you received the recalled implant or advise you of your legal rights. To find out if you have one of the implants in question, talk to your doctor. If you have symptoms associated with the defective hip replacement, please call 800-694-0994 or email the defective product lawyers in South Carolina at Law Firm of McWhirter, Bellinger, & Associates for a FREE consultation today. 

Stryker Hip Replacement Design

The recalled Stryker hip replacements, the Rejuvenate and ABG II, are described as "modular stem" hip replacements. In these hip replacements, the femoral component--the part that replaces the top of your leg bone--is made up of several parts that are designed to fit together. The modular design is intended to give surgeons more choices for customizing the angle and length of the femoral neck. It was thought that this would allow surgeons to give patients better-fitting and better-functioning hip replacements.

The design was also intended to facilitate some types of complicated hip replacement procedures that were hampered by single-piece femoral implant design.

Stryker Hip Replacement Recall

Stryker Orthopaedics has not revealed when it first started receiving reports of patient complications, but by April 2012, the reports became frequent and consistent enough that Stryker felt it had to take action. Instead of initiating an immediate recall, it issued a "Field Safety Notice" to doctors working with the hip implants stating that there was a "less than one percent" rate of revisions "potentially associated with fretting and/or corrosion at or about the modular neck junction" in the Rejuvenate and ABG II hip replacement models.

The stated potential hazards for this defect were:

  • Excessive metal debris may lead to "Adverse Local Tissue Reaction (ALTR)" associated with metallosis, tissue death, and pain, leading to revision surgery
  • Allergic reactions to metal may lead to revision surgery
  • Metal debris may cause bone loss around the implant

The communication did not list the possibility of systemic toxic metal poisoning, though we know from experience with the DePuy Hip Implant that this is a potential consequence of metal fragments released from joint replacement implants.

Then, on May 28, 2012, Stryker Orthopaedics announced it was initiating a recall of Rejuvenate and ABG II hip implants in Canada. Many wondered why Stryker did not recall the products in the US as well. 

On July 6, 2012 Stryker Orthopaedics finally announced a recall of the product in the US. Significantly, the press releases from Stryker no longer cite the "less than one percent" statistic, and instead say "The post-market surveillance data may be predictive of a trend." What that trend is, they do not say, but it was sufficiently alarming that the company decided to "voluntarily remove Rejuvenate and ABG II modular neck stems and terminate global distribution of these products."

We can only anticipate that they expect many more people to experience injury--and potentially experience much more serious injury than already reported--due to this defect.

If you have questions about the Stryker hip replacements or if you would like for more information, please contact the Law Firm of McWhirter, Bellinger & Associates today for a FREE consultation.  We happily serve all areas of South Carolina including Camden, Sumter, Lexington, Newberry, Orangeburg, Columbia, and Aiken, SC.