Reportedly, many of the individuals who received a Zimmer knee implant device are now exploring their options for a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages resulting from an allegedly defective device. Zimmer, Inc. has recalled several of its products in recent years and it has been alleged that the company may have known about the implant’s structural problems but took no action until it was inevitable that the public would discover the issue.
The FDA’s November 10, 2010 Enforcement Report showed that Zimmer received complaints regarding dislocated and loose knee joints in its NexGen MIS Tibial Components and, thereafter, recalled 65,000 units of the product. An additional recall was issued by Zimmer in December 2010 for the NexGen Legacy Posterior Stabilized (LPS) Flex implants. In the fall of 2012, a class II recall was issued for the NexGen Stemmed Non-augmentable Tibial Component because of cleaning operation issues during the manufacturing process that could cause allergic reactions resulting from a residue and residual particulate that may have been left on the device.
The expectation when receiving a knee replacement is increased mobility for around 15 years. However, defective knee replacement systems can be very problematic, and symptoms include pain, infection, swelling, unstable knee joints, arthritis, stiffness, and implant dislocation. In many cases, patients have had to undergo a second surgery to correct problems allegedly stemming from these devices. Revision surgeries are usually more complex and require additional recovery time that can be very painful and costly to patients.
In one case, filed in the Pennsylvania Eastern District Court, a woman alleged knee implant complications that required revision surgery from a defective Zimmer device. In another case, the plaintiff received a NexGen GSF LPS-Flex implant in 2009, but suffered complications and required revision surgery within only two years.
Defective knee implants and required revision surgeries can result in lost wages and pain and suffering. In many cases, individuals may be entitled to reimbursement for lost wages and damages through a personal injury or product liability lawsuit.