DePuy issued a U.S. recall of its metal-on-metal ASR hip implants in August 2010 (after 93,000 implant procedures) because of an extremely high failure rate requiring patients to have revision surgeries. The evidence so far shows that the device is exceedingly difficult for orthopedic surgeons to implant properly. For background on the DePuy saga, see prior DePuy Drug Recall Lawyer Blog entries.
The hip implant was withdrawn from the Australian market in late 2009. DePuy (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson) told the public in the U.S. shortly thereafter that it was phasing out the implant because they were “focusing on newer technologies.”
The Australian Senate likened these hip implants to “ticking time bombs.” They want a system put in place to monitor adverse outcomes for hip implant patients, and they want to make sure doctors and patients are aware of the problems they may be facing. Most importantly, they want to make sure implant patients are continually monitored for future problems.