Hip replacements have been the subject of many news stories as more and more of them are being recalled due to early failure problems, metal poisoning or other problems. For many patients, this means additional revision surgeries in order to correct the problems with the devices at additional expense to their insurance company or Medicare. One company is hoping to change that.
Consumers Union, which is the policy and advocacy division of Consumer Reports, is working to convince medical device manufacturers to provide hip warranties and other similar medical devices. The organization works with more than 1 million activists to help pass laws designed to protect consumers at the local, state and national level. The group says that medical device manufacturers that offer such hip warranties would set themselves apart from competitors in an extremely competitive market.
More than 1 million hip and other medical device replacement surgeries are performed each year. That number could reach 4 million by 2030. According to a report released in 2005 by the National Center of Biotechnology Information (NCBI), hip and other medical device revision surgeries exceeded more than $3 billion and these costs were borne by insurance companies, the federal government and by patients themselves. Also, revision surgery is much more painful and difficult because bone is removed during the initial process. Patients who must undergo revision surgery also have a longer recovery period than the initial surgery, and some will suffer chronic pain even after the revision.
Change in Policy
It may be difficult for Consumers Union to achieve its goal of providing hip warranties as the federal government prepares to implement a more than 2% tax on medical devices, which was included in the Affordable Care Act. That policy is causing device manufacturers to claim that the additional tax could force them to eliminate jobs in order to pay it. Also, several companies are facing multi-million dollar lawsuits that could lead to settlements as high as $2.5 billion. Stryker recently announced a $1.43 billion settlement with patients who had filed lawsuits against the popular orthopedic manufacturing company.
Do You need a Revision Surgery After a Failed Hip Replacement?
Because hip warranties don’t exist today, patients who have to undergo a revision surgery for complications following a hip replacement have few options to protect themselves. If you or a loved one has suffered from complications following a hip replacement, or if a loved one has died from complications of replacement or revision surgery, contact us at Attorney Group. We can evaluate your case and determine if you have a claim against your hip manufacturer that would entitle you to a monetary consultation. If so, one of our affiliated attorneys can help you file a lawsuit with no out-of-pocket costs to you. Call Attorney Group for more information.