A February recall of a major medical device manufactured by Johnson & Johnson could affect scores of Ohio residents. The orthopedic device was subject to a Class I recall, which is the most serious type of recall in the medical community. Physicians use the device in reconstructive knee surgery. The recall was initiated because of reports that the device has been fracturing, injuring the very people it is designed to help. It is likely that the company will now be facing a slew of products liability cases in connection with these problems.
Federal regulators at the Food and Drug Administration say they have received reports of 10 incidents in which the device has malfunctioned. The main problem appears to be a fracture point along one of the device’s joints. If the sleeve of the device fails, patients could experience a variety of ailments, including loss of function or loss of limb. In severe cases, the device could cause serious soft tissue damage, along with a potentially deadly infection.
FDA administrators are only issuing the recall for devices that have not yet been implanted. The company is not recommending additional follow-up for patients who have already received the device unless they are experiencing symptoms.
The device was manufactured by Depuy, Johnson & Johnson’s orthopedic division, from 2008 until 2012. Depuy, consequently, is also currently embroiled in a series of lawsuits regarding failures in its hip replacement devices.
The 10 patients who have already reported adverse effects from the device are likely already pursuing legal action against the company. They could seek compensation for a variety of wrongs, including pain and suffering, emotional distress and disfigurement. The patients could also look to recover damages to pay for additional medical bills related to the device’s failure.
People who believe they have been injured because of faulty medical equipment should seek legal advice as soon as possible. You could obtain additional money in a civil suit that could help you return to a high-quality, injury-free life.
Source: Huffington Post, “Johnson & Johnson orthopedic device recalled due to fracture potential,” Feb. 22, 2013.