Stryker confronts mounting metal hip recall lawsuits

Stryker's ($SYK) bottom line is already taking a hit from the escalating cost of its all-metal hip recalls. But lawsuits against the device maker are also rising, threatening to grab an even bigger chunk of the company's cash.

Injury Lawyer News reports that an Illinois man is suing Stryker for $100 million over an allegedly faulty ABG II hip replacement. The man claims Stryker didn't appropriately warn patients about risks of the implant, which he says left him with soft tissue damage, pain, limping, metal poisoning and the need for revision surgeries.

As the article notes, Stryker's orthopedics division has said it would reimburse patients for any medical expenses relating to the implant, which it voluntarily recalled in July 2012. Stryker has said it expects to pay as much as $390 million to cover recall costs associated with its ABG II and Rejuvenate hips.

Of course, with that large a recall at play, lawyers are trying to build and expand class action lawsuits representing patients who say their Stryker metal hips failed and led to numerous health problems. Bernstein Liebhard LLP of New York issued a release this week announcing that 161 Stryker hip recall lawsuits are now filed in consolidated litigation in New Jersey Superior Court, up from just 81 earlier this year.

Stryker is far from alone, however. Johnson & Johnson/DePuy ($JNJ) and many other manufacturers of all-metal hips are facing massive lawsuits and increased regulatory scrutiny regarding their metal hips, due to reports of product failure and related patient health problems.

Stryker's profit plunged more than 13% in the 2013 first quarter due to recall-related costs.

- read the Injury Lawyer News story
- check out the class action lawsuit release

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