Wright Medical group suffered a damaging blow in its legal battle over its metal hip implant devices because a jury awarded a plaintiff more than $10 million, which stems from a trial over the company’s products. A jury in Atlanta deliberated for three days after a two-week trial, in which the person suing had a hip implant and Wright was accused of misrepresentation its product’s safety. The $11 million verdict includes compensatory damages worth $1 million, as well as punitive damages worth $10 million, and this signals an early loss for the company over its devices. Wright Medical group is still faced with many more cases, which was filed in the Northern District of Georgia, and these cases number in the hundreds.
The whole thing started back in 2013, when a former ski instructor by the name of Robyn Christiansen, from Utah, sued Wright because she said her hip implant caused her to suffer tissue damage after the implant came loose. She got the implant after speaking with her doctor in 2006, and she was provided info about Wright. She said Wright Medical group claimed that their metal device was better than devices made with a polyethylene lining, and that their device would actually last longer.
The woman is only one of around 2,000 people who have filed a complaint against the company, and these people have claimed they have received defective hip implant systems. As for when Christiansen filed her lawsuit that was back in 2013, which was seven years after she got her implant. As previously mentioned, the jury came back with a verdict that included $10 million in punitive damages and $1 million in compensatory damages.
The complaint says Christiansen got the implant in 2006 because she was provided with info by Wright Medical group, who claimed their design, which was metal on metal, was better than designs that featured a lining made with polyethylene. She started to feel pain in her right hip, while she was exercising in 2012 and then she went in for surgery because her doctor thought there was a loose component, but the doctor found out that the soft tissue was damaged due to metal debris, which was causing her hip to fail. Her counsel wrote that she was a ski instructor for more than 40 years and now she cannot do the things she once enjoyed, due to her limits to do things, which includes activities such as hiking and water-skiing.
In most states, people are provided with legal claims, as well as the right to be compensated after they have been injured due to a defective medical device, or if the device doesn’t perform as it was advertised. Patients who have suffered injury can file a lawsuit and seek compensation. This includes compensation for the cost of the surgery (replacement), as well as for medical expenses they endured and pain and suffering. They can also fight to be compensated for lost future wages, lost past wages, as well as punitive damages.