Stryker, the medical device company that marketed Rejuvenate and ABG II hip implants, revealed last week that charges related to the 2012 Stryker hip recall contributed to disappointing fourth quarter earnings. According to MLive.com, the company reported net earnings of $260 million, down 32.6 percent from fourth quarter 2013.
Among other things, Stryker revealed that it took a charge of $116 million related to the hip replacement recall. Rejuvenate and ABG II modular-neck hip stems were pulled from the market in July 2012, after data indicated the metal components were prone to fretting and corrosion. This defect could cause recipients to experience pain, swelling and other complication that result in failure of the hip.
Prior to the announcement of the recall, Stryker had distributed roughly 20,000 Rejuvenate and ABG II components worldwide, though it’s not clear how many were actually implanted in patients. Since then, thousands of people have filed Stryker hip lawsuits in U.S. courts that seek compensation for debilitating complications allegedly caused by the devices.
In November 2014, the company announced that it had reached an agreement to settle nearly all of the Stryker hip lawsuits filed against it in state and federal courts. Under terms of the agreement, patients who have undergone revision of a failing Rejuvenate or ABG II hip will receive a base award of $300,000 per failed implant. However, the award could be subject to deductions and enhancements based on the particulars of each case, including additional compensation for claimants who suffered complications during revision surgery, as well as future surgeries caused by complications. The Stryker hip recall settlement also provides compensation for Rejuvenate and ABG II recipients who need a revision but who are medically unable to undergo the surgery.
To participate in the settlement program, eligible plaintiffs must enroll by March 2, 2015. Stryker could begin distributing awards as early as this summer.