Encouraging news for affected victims of the Stryker Rejuvenate metal on metal hips. An agreement has been reached to settle at least four Stryker Rejuvante hip lawsuits during early mediation process.
Howmedica Osteonics Corp., the parent company, and Stryker faces about 1,000 lawsuits over problems with their Rejuvenate and ABG II hip implants. Stryker the hip manufacturer, recalled the implants in July 2012, after reports revealed that an inordinate number were failing prematurely.
What is Wrong with the Stryker Hips?
The Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II are modular neck-stems, consist of two pieces that fit inside each other to allow the surgeon to customize the length of the femoral component. The modular design has been associated with an increased risk of metallosis from the release of cobalt and chromium metal debris as the neck grinds against the titanium femoral stem.
Broken Hips Broken Promises
Metal hip replacements were promised to last 15 to 20 years. The Stryker Rejuvenate recall was issued less than two years after the design was introduced. According to experts an estimated 20,000 were implanted.
New Jersey state court is host to about half of the total number of lawsuits. The New Jersey litigation is centralized before Judge Martinotti for coordinated pretrial proceedings as part of an MCL, or multi-county litigation.
The mediation was designed to facilitate Stryker Rejuvenate settlements, and a group of 10 cases were selected for early consideration. The first six cases were mediated over the last few weeks, with at least four of the cases settling. Negotiations on the remaining two failed, but the parties are expected to begin mediation efforts on the other four cases in January 2014.
The total costs associated with the recall and Stryker Rejuvenate settlements may exceed $1 billion.
In addition to the state court litigation in New Jersey, all federal cases filed in U.S. District Courts throughout the country are centralized in the District of Minnesota as part of an MDL, or Multidistrict Litigation.