Jury awards $8.3 million for faulty hip implants
LOS ANGELES - A jury Friday awarded $8.3 million to a former prison
guard who accused Johnson & Johnson's DePuy Orthopaedics subsidiary
of knowingly marketing a faulty hip implant that was later recalled.
Jurors found that the ASR XL implant was defectively designed and caused metal poisoning and other health problems suffered by Loren Kransky after he underwent surgery in 2007.
the panel rejected the 65-year-old's claim that DePuy failed to
adequately warn of the risks associated with the implant, and it didn't
find the company acted with malice, prohibiting Kransky from collecting
any punitive damages.
The fraud and negligence suit is the first
of nearly 11,000 similar cases involving an all-metal ball-and-socket
hip joint that was pulled from the market two years ago to reach trial
in the United States. Others like Kransky claim the implants have left
them with crippling injuries or in need of other replacement surgeries.
Johnson & Johnson has set aside about $1 billion to cover costs of the recall and lawsuits.
Plaintiff's attorney Doug Saeltzer said the verdict bodes well for the other cases.
message is that these cases are valid, that the injuries are real and
severe, and Johnson & Johnson and DePuy have to pay significant
money for their mistakes," Saeltzer said.
Loire Gawreluk, a DePuy spokeswoman, said the Warsaw, Ind., company plans to appeal.