On June 1, 2012, Smith & Nephew initiated a voluntary worldwide recall of the metal liner in its R3 Acetabular System hip after a series of reports of loosening, pain, device failure, infection, metal sensitivity and dislocation in the hip replacement system. Smith & Nephew is a London-based medical device manufacturer and the fourth largest manufacturer of hip implants in the United States. The R3 Acetabular System was launched in the United States in 2009 and by 2012, over 7,700 devices had been implanted worldwide. Unfortunately, the device experienced a higher than normal revision rate, with less than satisfactory clinical results as a total hip replacement device. The device was marketed as durable and wear-resistant, however many of the implants have failed prematurely.
The Smith & Nephew R3 Acetabular System was alleged to have a design defect. The implants have a metal liner made of cobalt and chromium, which release ions into the body. These ions can cause tissue damage, destroy muscle and bone, and spread to other organs. Cobalt also can cause heart muscle disease and bone or muscle deterioration around the implant. As the muscles and bone deteriorate, the implants can loosen and cause the device to fail. The complications can lead to metal poisoning as well.
Since the 2012 recall, numerous design defect and failure to warn lawsuits have been filed to compensate patients for actual medical cost, future medical expenses, loss of earnings and pain and suffering in the form of monetary compensation. If you or a loved one has experienced device failure or complications from a Smith & Nephew R3 Acetabular System, you may be entitled to compensation and should have your case evaluated by a legal representative knowledgeable about these types of cases.