Stryker had high hopes for its Rejuvenate hip replacement device due to its innovative modular neck design, which was supposed to provide a more personalized fit for implant recipients. Instead, the device was just as prone to failure as its more conventional metal-on-metal counterparts, and was recalled in July 2012.
Rejuvenate Hip Likely to Corrode and Increase Risk of Metallosis
The Stryker Rejuvenate hips differed from other all-metal hip replacements because they had more moving parts than traditional devices. The implants consisted of four parts rather than two: a femoral stem; a metal neck; a ball, and an acetabular cup. Some younger hip replacement candidates were considered candidates for this type of implant because of its increased adjustability, which allowed orthopedic surgeons to better fit it to some body types. In addition, the device was marketed as being “safer” than other implants, because the acetabular cup was lined with polyethylene, a plastic-like substance that would cushion the components and avoid the wear-and-tear that had been occurring with other metal-on-metal hips.
Unfortunately, the Rejuvenate implant did not perform as well as expected. The four-part design was more susceptible to fretting and corrosion, as is any metal device with a large number of moving parts. Additionally, the Rejuvenate device made recipients more susceptible to metallosis, or metal poisoning, due to the increased level of microscopic metal ions that shed over the course of normal wear-and-tear. Failed implants would not only prevent recipients from living full, productive lives, they put them at risk for other ailments due to increased metal levels in the blood. Pain, swelling and tissue damage are some of the most common side effects, but metal poisoning can also affect other areas of the body.
According to reports, Stryker Rejuvenate hips were only laboratory-tested before being made available to the public. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted approval for the devices based on the fact that the design was substantially similar to a product that had already been approved: the Wright Medical Techology Profemur Total Hip Modular Neck System. Under the FDA’s 510(k) approval process, the Stryker Rejuvenate hips were approved for use with very little pre-market scrutiny. Moreover, Wright Medical’s Profemur system was also linked to high failure rates, resulting in many patients having to receive revision surgeries to remove the Profemur.
Currently, many hip replacement patients who received Stryker hips and have experienced failure, are not only undergoing revision surgeries to replace the defective implants, they are seeking compensation from Stryker for pain and suffering, along with unforeseen medical costs. A hip replacement revision surgery is often more difficult to recover from, due to the damage caused by the previous implant.
The Rottenstein Law Group Can Help if You’ve Been Injured by a Stryker Hip Replacement
It is important to consult your orthopedic surgeon to determine whether or not the symptoms you might be experiencing are consistent with a failed hip replacement implant, and if that implant was manufactured and sold by Stryker.
Lawsuits are currently being filed across the country, brought by recipients of the recalled Stryker implants. Plaintiffs are seeking compensation for pain, suffering, unforeseen medical expenses, lost wages and other claims.