May 16, 2016 - URGENT NOTICE FOR STRYKER HIP IMPLANT RECIPIENTS - Following the Stryker Rejuvenate and ABGII recall in the summer of 2012, Stryker eventually proposed a settlement agreement which would settle at least a portion of the more than 6,000 Stryker hip claims. The recall was issued after it was found a large percentage of those with a Stryker Rejuvenate or ABGII hip implant had suffered such issues as: inflammation of the area, chronic pain, loosening of the implant and issues associated with metal toxicity such as vision and hearing impairments, gastrointestinal, renal, thyroid, neurological and cardiovascular issues, DNA disruptions, reproductive disorders, the development of pseudo-tumors and the development of certain cancers.
The Limitations of the Stryker Master Settlement Agreement
The Stryker Master Settlement Agreement only applied to those who had undergone hip revision surgery, removing the defective Stryker hip and replacing it with a safer alternative. More specifically, a qualified revision surgery, under the Stryker Master Settlement included the following:
First, the femoral stem and neck of the Rejuvenate or ABGII must have been removed more than 180 days following the original implantation, but prior to November 3, 2014;
Second, the device must not have been removed only because it broke;
Third, the revision surgery must not have been solely due to: trauma, recurrent dislocation or infection;
Fourth, the revision surgery must have taken place in the U.S. or in a U.S. military hospital, and
Fifth, the revision surgery must have been due to device failure, including: abnormal diagnostic scans, findings of tissue damage or elevated cobalt levels.
The original Stryker Master Settlement Agreement also stated that those who had not undergone revision surgery, whose doctor had not indicated revision surgery was necessary, and who had a current lawsuit filed against Stryker would have their case remain pending until November 3, 2015, at which time the case would be dismissed without prejudice. The applicable statutes of limitations were to be tolled until five years from the date of the original Stryker implant surgery or until June 30, 2017, whichever came first.
Is There Any Recourse for Non-Revised Stryker Patients?
Those who had perhaps suffered injury from a recalled Stryker hip, but had not yet undergone revision surgery were left wondering about their own future, and you could be one of these patients. In other words, if you did not meet the eligibility requirements listed above, you were not eligible to participate in the Stryker Master Settlement Agreement, effectively leaving you injured, with nowhere to turn.
Will There Be a Second Round of Settlements?
As of this date, there is no second round of settlements as many thought there might be. Even if a second round is announced, it is likely to only focus on those claimants who are revised prior to the date the theoretical second round is announced. This means there is a particular urgency for unrevised Stryker hip implant recipients. If you are one of these unrevised Stryker hip patients, there are two things you must do immediately. First, you must speak to a Stryker hip attorney as soon as possible.
This discussion will answer any questions you may have regarding your chances of a settlement and will help to ensure your rights are protected and your case preserved in the interim. Next, you must consult with your Orthopedic Surgeon to see if there is a medical necessity for you to undergo a revision surgery as soon as possible. To ensure that you will be eligible should a second round of settlements be announced, this revision may be legally necessary. Further, while the original settlement agreement allowed unrevised claimants who were prohibited from having revision surgery due to health issues, to take part in the settlement, there is no way to know whether a second round would allow for this.
No Guarantees for Injured Stryker Patients
If you are one of the many consumers who suffered injury from the recalled Stryker Rejuvenate or ABGII, but you did not qualify for the first round of Stryker settlements, it is important that you know the following:
There is no guarantee there will be a second-round of Stryker settlements;
If there is a second round of Stryker settlements, it could happen any time;
Based on the original Master Settlement Agreement, if you have not undergone revision surgery by the time the potential second round of Stryker settlements is announced, you case could be worth nothing, and...
It could be now or never as far as securing legal representation and undergoing revision surgery.
It could be extremely beneficial to your future to contact a Stryker hip attorney as soon as possible, to ensure that, if there should be a second round settlement, you will be able to participate.