Litigation

Florida, Kentucky Residents Sue Zimmer Alleging Hip Implant Defect

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Wendy R. Fleishman of the national plaintiffs’ law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP announced March 11 that Todd Lovelace and Christine Walker have filed separate personal injury lawsuits against Zimmer Holdings, the nation's largest producer of orthopedic devices.

Lovelace and Walker seek respective dam ges against Zimmer for multiple surgeries and debilitating injuries they said they suffered because of the allegedly defective Durom Acetabular Component, an artificial hip socket known as the Durom Cup, which is manufactured and sold by Zimmer. First on the U.S. market in 2006, the Durom Cup was implanted in 12,000 patients.

According to the lawsuits:

Lovelace, a 45-year-old truck driver from Elizabethtown, Ky., received a Zimmer Durom Cup in May 2008 as part of hip replacement surgery on his left hip. After months of great pain, agony, difficulty walking and bearing weight, he was compelled to undergo a second surgery to remove the defective cup in December 2008.

In December 2007, the Durom Cup was implanted in Walker, a 53-year old former registered nurse from West Palm Beach, Florida. She too suffered months of great pain and agony, necessitating her to stop working. In December 2008, her Durom Cup was removed.

A "metal-on-metal" implant, the failures of which were recently profiled in a New York Times article published March 4, 2010, the Durom Cup was not cemented or screwed in place during implantation. Instead, it was designed to bond to the patient’s hip bone.

After the product was introduced in the United States, Zimmer began receiving complaints from physicians that its Durom Cup was failing.

In July 2008, Zimmer announced that it was temporarily suspending the sales of the Durom Cup in the United States. In its announcement, Zimmer stated that the suspension was necessary "while the Company updated labeling to provide more detailed surgical technique instructions to surgeons and implements its surgical training program in the U.S."

Zimmer denies any "evidence of a defect" with the Durom Cup and, to date, has refused to issue a recall notice in accordance with procedures established by the Food and Drug Administration.

Walker’s lawsuit was filed March 11 in federal district court in West Palm Beach, Fla. Lovelace’s lawsuit was filed in federal district court in Louisville, Ky., on Feb. 26, 2010.

Lieff Cabraser represents persons across America injured by defective medical devices, including the Zimmer Durom Cup. For more information, visit http://www.personalinjurylawyeramerica.com/medical/zimmer-durom-hip-recall.htm or call 1-800-541-7358 and ask to speak to attorney Heather Foster.

Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP is a 60-plus attorney law firm that has represented plaintiffs nationwide since 1972 and has offices in San Francisco, New York, and Nashville, Tenn. For more information, visit www.lieffcabraser.com.