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Shooting from the Hip: Defective Medical Devices Cause Big Problems

Mark Stephan, a remarkable Illinois man in his mid-50s, bicycled 3,200 miles last year to raise funds and awareness for a cause very dear to his heart. Six years ago, Stephan had an unfortunate accident on his bicycle that resulted in fractured vertebrae, which left him quadriplegic with a prognosis from doctors that the rest of his life would be spent in a wheelchair. Never one to lie down without a fight, Stephan struggled through intensive therapy and miraculously left the hospital only five months later, walking on his own two feet. Stephan’s ride raised money for the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, which literally helped him get back on his feet.

New challenges posed by defective medical devices

As if overcoming quadriplegia weren’t enough, Stephan is now battling new health woes as more information emerges about the defective Stryker hip implant he received only a few years after his accident. Stephan has company, as the manufacturer who made Stephan’s implant alone sold approximately 20,000 metal hip components worldwide. In response to implant recipients’ complaints of swelling, pain and early device failure caused by metal corrosion, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finally recalled the model Stephan received. In the wake of the recall, more than 380 lawsuits have been filed against the manufacturer just in New Jersey.

Hope on the horizon

In response to the proliferation of dangerous medical products, the FDA recently announced it is introducing a new system to identify high-risk devices like the Stryker hip implants in hopes of improving patient safety. While hopes are high for the unique device identification (UDI) system, it brings little comfort to those already suffering from unsafe implants.

Those injured by defective medical devices have the right to be compensated

When medical device companies sell defective products, consumers deserve to be compensated for the pain, suffering and, in certain cases, lifetime disabilities they cause. In addition, those injured by such devices are also entitled to reimbursement for costs associated with:

  • Necessary treatments
  • Testing and diagnosis
  • Revision surgery

If a defective medical device is causing you pain and suffering, contact the competent team of medical malpractice lawyers at Hoffman DiMuzio today.

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