Zimmer Knee Failure MDL Continues to Grow
Hayward, California, resident Sandra Hurtado is suing Zimmer, Inc. for injuries allegedly caused by the company’s NexGen knee implants. Though her June 8, 2012 complaint was filed in a California federal court, her case will be consolidated with the multidistrict litigation (MDL) now proceeding in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. In court papers, the consolidated litigation is referred to as the Zimmer NexGen Knee Implant Products Liability Litigation (MDL 2272).
California woman seeks damages for Zimmer knee problems
Like many plaintiffs in the MDL, Hurtado was able to file a “short form” complaint, which provides for a streamlined and succinct way for injured individuals to join the litigation. The short form complaint allows the plaintiff to check the box on the version of the Zimmer implant that caused their injury. Five Zimmer NexGen products are listed in the short form complaint:
- Zimmer NexGen LPS-Flex
- Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex
- Zimmer NexGen GSF LPS-Flex
- Zimmer NexGen GSF CR-Flex
- Zimmer NexGen MIS Tibia
Thus, if a potential plaintiff wanted to file a Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex lawsuit, they would check the appropriate box to identify that product.
Zimmer knee problems began within three years of implantation
In Hurtado’s case, she was implanted with a Zimmer NexGen GSF LPS-Flex on June 17, 2008. Though the short form complaint does not offer many specifics, it is clear that her implant soon began to loosen and fail. She underwent revision surgery in 2011 to repair or replace her implant, only three years after her initial procedure.
Traditional knee implants are expected to last fifteen years or more. The claims of some plaintiffs of high rates of alleged early Zimmer knee failure in the NexGen line of implants has been widely reported. In 2009, researchers revealed that nearly four percent of the Zimmer NexGen knee replacements performed at the Mayo Clinic between 2000 and 2011 failed sooner than expected.
Patients with failing or loosening implants can suffer reduced mobility, severe pain, infection, and bone damage. As in Hurtado’s case, a failed knee implant often requires additional revision surgeries to repair the damage.