DePuy Hip Recall Compensation Claims in the UK
The worldwide recall of the DePuy ASR Articular Surface Hip Replacement System and the DePuy ASR XL Acetabular Hip Replacement System in August 2010 was the foundation for a substantial number of DePuy hip recall compensation claims. Despite comprehensive news coverage and advice from the UK Medical Regulator (the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency or “MHRA”), many people are still unsure whether they are entitled to claim compensation for the DePuy hip recall and how to go about making DePuy hip recall compensation claims.
This article aims to provide general information about the reasons for the DePuy hip recall, why it may be possible to claim for DePuy hip recall compensation and how potential claimants should proceed with DePuy hip recall compensation claims. Because of the personal circumstances of patients who have suffered an injury attributable to a faulty DePuy hip replacement system, no two DePuy hip recall compensation claims are identical; and readers are advised to seek individual professional legal guidance from a qualified and experienced solicitor.
The Reason for the DePuy Hip Recall in the UK
The two faulty Depuy hip replacement systems were recalled due to a “higher than expected” failure rate being identified by an Australian hip implant registry, which was confirmed by data from the UK National Joint Registry and other international medical databases. Whereas the accepted failure rate for metal on metal hip implants was ≤ 5 per cent over a fifteen year period, the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems were failing at a rate in excess of 12 per cent over five years — almost one-in-eight.
The excessive failure rate was attributed to significant friction between the “large head” ball of the implant and the retaining cup, which caused metal particles to be dispersed into the bloodstream which then damaged the hip bone and caused tissue necrosis around the implant area — loosening the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems and causing them to dislocate or “fail”. Fears of “system toxicity” caused by the chromium and cobalt particles were also raised by the UK Medical Regulator who published a Medical Device Alert in April 2010.
Since the DePuy hip recall, more health issues attributable to the faulty hip replacement systems have been highlighted, including possibly neurological and cardiovascular injury, the discovery of high chromium levels in the placental blood of child-bearing women who have been implanted with a metal on metal hip replacement, and the potential for cancer and leukaemia due to chromium and cobalt being classified as “probably” carcinogenic by the World Health Organisation.
Who is Affected by the DePuy Hip Recall in the UK?
There are approximately ten thousand recipients of faulty Depuy hip replacement systems in the UK – each of whom could sustain an injury and require revision surgery should their DePuy hip replacement system fail. The most frequent indicator of faulty DePuy hip replacement systems is a pain caused by inflammation around the hip implant area, but patients making DePuy hip replacement compensation claims have also recorded the following symptoms:-
- Pain in the thigh and groin when rising from a seated position
- Swelling and fluid retention in the hip and groin
- Pain in the hip when walking while carrying a load
- Tumours and cysts developing in any area of the body
- Hearing or vision problems
- Memory loss and headaches
The advice currently being prescribed by the UK Medical Regulator is for recipients of all metal on metal hip implants to have a blood test each year to check for high levels of metallic ions in their blood. Those who lead more active lifestyles — and therefore at risk from an increased rate of friction — may consider having a blood test more frequently.
Eligibility for DePuy Hip Recall Compensation Claims in the UK
DePuy hip recall compensation claims in the UK are made under the Consumer Protection Act 1987 which stipulates that you are eligible to claim compensation for the DePuy hip recall if it can be shown that:-
- the DePuy hip replacement system was defective when you originally received it,
- you sustained an injury directly attributable to the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems, and
- the fault which caused the injury was present when the DePuy hip replacement system was introduced to the market
There is overwhelming evidence that the Depuy hip replacement systems were indeed faulty when they were introduced to the UK market in 2003, and consequently would have been defective when originally implanted. The only condition which therefore needs to be satisfied is that you sustained an injury which was directly attributable to the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems rather than by a surgical error or external infection.
This condition will be confirmed by your medical records if you have either already undergone revision surgery to change the faulty DePuy hip replacement system or have revision surgery scheduled by your doctor. How much compensation for the DePuy hip recall you are entitled to receive will be partly determined by the content of your medical records, the effect that the hip replacement injury has had on your quality of life and any financial costs you have incurred which are directly attributable to the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems.
How to Make DePuy Hip Recall Compensation Claims in the UK
The process for making DePuy hip recall compensation claims in the UK is to first speak with a solicitor about your injury, advise him or her about your revision surgery and, if possible, provide them with the identity number of your DePuy hip replacement system. The solicitor will want to know more about how the injury has affected your quality of life and the impact on those with whom you live. They will want to know about any psychological trauma you suffered and what the financial cost of the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems has been to you.
Once the solicitor has compiled the strongest possible DePuy hip recall claim on your behalf, it will be sent to DePuy´s loss adjusters — a company called Broadspire, whose main UK offices are based in Milton Keynes. Broadspire will send you a medical mandate form asking for authorisation to access your relevant medical records, which you should complete and return to them deleting the section in which you consent to releasing the explanted faulty DePuy hip replacement system, as this may be required in litigation at a later date.
Although DePuy have already admitted liability for the recalled hip replacement systems, their offer of compensation extends only to medical costs associated with testing and replacing the faulty DePuy hip replacement. They have also offered to pay “reasonable” travel expenses and replace any income lost directly attributable to revision surgery but not necessarily prior to the operation and during the recovery period. Their position may change should the first of the class action suits go against them, however court action in the UK may be necessary and your solicitor will keep you informed with the progress of your DePuy hip recall compensation claim.
Important Information about DePuy Hip Recall Compensation Claims in the UK
Under the Consumer Protection Act 1987, people wishing to make DePuy hip recall compensation claims have ten years from the date the faulty DePuy hip replacement systems were introduced to the UK market in which to file a claim for DePuy hip recall compensation. As the first DePuy hip replacement systems were implanted in 2003 in the UK, this means that claims for DePuy hip recall compensation have to be filed before the end of 2013.
If you have already been contacted Broadspire or any agent representing DePuy Orthopaedics Ltd, you should advise your solicitor immediately. Your solicitor will ask for details of any correspondence that has passed between yourselves including any medical mandate form you may have already signed and returned. Any contact between yourself and Broadspire does not disqualify you from making a claim for DePuy hip recall compensation.
Further Information about DePuy Hip Recall Compensation Claims in the UK
If you or a loved one has sustained an injury which is directly attributable to faulty DePuy hip replacement systems, you are invited to contact our service on for a free discussion with a highly experienced solicitor in complete confidence and with no obligation to proceed with a DePuy hip recall compensation claim.
Our solicitors will answer any questions you may have about your eligibility to claim, how long a claim for DePuy hip recall compensation may take and how much compensation you may be entitled to receive. Prior to any instructions to pursue a claim for DePuy hip recall compensation on your behalf, our solicitors will explain to you any costs associated with making a DePuy hip recall compensation claim and advise you whether you may be entitled to “No Win, No Fee” legal representation.
Our lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and when you call we would request that you have a pen and pad of paper by your side in order to make any notes you may wish to refer back to at a later date. You can also request a call-back from a solicitor by completing your contact details in the form at the bottom of the page. Please note that there is no charge for this service and any personal information you provide us with is strictly confidential.