Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) should shell-out $5 million in ASR case

by Paul Wilson | Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 | 432 views

Northern, WI 04/16/2013 (usastockreport) – The DePuy unit that belongs to Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) (Closed: $81.71, Down by 1.24%) has been dragged to court by an Illinois nurse in connection with a metal-on-hip implant that had a defective design. Her lawyer has argued before a Chicago jury that she should be awarded a minimum of $5 million for the harm that had been caused by the failure of the device. Denman Heard, the plaintiff Carol Strum’s attorney said that DePuy had sold the defective ASR hips knowingly before the largest healthcare products manufacturer in the world, Johnson and Johnson recalled all its 93,000 metal-on-metal implants in the August of 2010.

Company at fault
Heard also said that extra damages should be awarded as a punishment to the company. The trial began on March 11 and is the second one to go to trial out of the close to 11,000 that have been filed across the United States. On March 8 a Los Angeles jury had found that the hip implant design had been defective and had subsequently ordered that compensatory damages be paid. They also averred that DePuy had failed to warn patients and doctors about the possible risks of the implant. These cases are going to cost J&J millions of dollars. Just as they had done in the first trail, DePuy’s lawyers denied that the chromium and cobalt device was defective.

The ASR XL had been implanted on Strum’s hip in January 2008 and replaced three years later with a different device. The company’s lawyers said that she suffers from a host of health issues including allergies, back and chest pains and migraines. She also suffered from autoimmune problems and Crohn’s disease and said that the bad outcome had nothing to do with the device.

Faulty design
Heard on the other hand argued that there was definite indication of blackened tissue as well as an increase in blood ion levels in her bloodstream all of which proved that the implant was getting eroded and that the metallic debris that it was shedding was spreading in her body. This was indicative of a faulty design. The plaintiff’s lawyer said that a study had shown that 47 percent of the implants had failed after a seven year period and another report had shown that there had been a 37 percent failure after a period of four years. Lawsuits have been filed in various states across the United States.

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