Thanks to faulty knee implants like the DePuy Synthes Attune knee replacement, people who rely on these prosthetics for their daily lives are sometimes forced to take leave from work. According to the FDA, the Attune knee replacement fails 13 percent of the time, an estimate some say is far too low, as it fails to consider unreported events. One scholarly paper suggested that, in just two months, 21 cases were reported.
Younger People Stand to Lose a Lot
Younger people stand to lose a lot of money when a knee replacement falters. Revision surgery, which is often used to fix issues with knee implants, are far less likely to be successful than the initial surgery and can result in serious pain and long recovery periods. Some patients need to rest for three months before returning to work. And since a lot of employers don’t allow employees to take several months off, people can lose their jobs and ultimately their livelihood. This is bad news for younger knee-surgery patients who, after intensive surgery, could lose years of valuable work.
For this reason, patients who have suffered at the hands of the faulty Attune knee replacement could recover compensation for lost wages – both present and future. That’s in addition to remuneration for medical bills and any other associated expenses. If you are one of these patients, you may want to seek out the help of a skilled defective device attorney – one that understands the intricacies of faulty knee replacement systems.
The costs, when analyzed at the societal level, are high. According to one study, individuals could save nearly $19,000 if their total knee arthroplasty (TKA) goes well – that amounts to nearly $12 billion in savings for society at large. By contrast, people can stand to lose a lot of money if the TKA goes poorly and they are forced to have the often-problematic revision surgery.
And since anyone undergoing knee replacement surgery has a 10-30 percent chance of getting a Depuy Attune prosthetic, the stakes are high for the increasing number of patients below the age of 65. In 2014, the number of patients between the age of 45 and 64 rose by a whopping 188 percent – meaning more and more people could lose out on some key working years if they get stuck with a faulty knee replacement.
Why are the Depuy Attune knee replacements so poor? They tend to fail due to what is known as tibial debonding. The so-called tibial baseplate is secured in place via an adhesive cement, which, it turns out, can sometimes become unstuck. This leads to a loose prosthetic and potentially severe side-effects, including:
- Bone damage
- Muscular damage
That’s not to mention the long recovery time and rehabilitation that often occurs after an intensive revision surgery. When people expect a 15-year replacement and only get one to two years, it’s understandable that they’d want to seek out compensation for their unjust injuries.
More Faulty Products
Sadly, the Depuy Attune device is only one of three knee replacement systems that have been known to fail due to inadequate bonding. The Arthrex iBalance Total Knee Arthroplasty and the Exatech Optetrak knee replacement have both been known to fail to stay in place due to a faulty component. The Exactech product – approved in 1994 – contained, until recently, a “finned tibial tray” that was not structurally fit to bear the weight of the average patient. That’s, at least, what a report by Science Direct concluded. The manufacturer recalled the device in 2012, without making too much noise about the problem, and replaced the finned component with a different design.
Questionable Approval Process
Using questionable process known as a 510(k) premarket notification, these manufacturers have been able to sell their faulty products on the market without undergoing a thorough approval process. Under 510(k) guidelines, companies need to show that the product is “substantially equivalent” to other devices on the market. Thus, problems like inadequate bonding can go under the radar, leading to unnecessary, life-altering injuries. Once again, if you have been injured due to a faulty knee replacement, you might benefit from legal representation. Having a skilled defective device attorney can increase your chances of receiving maximum compensation.