The Wright Conserve devices (often referred to as the “Wright Conserve Hip Cup,” “Wright Conserve Plus Hip Cup,” or just “the Wright Conserve,” and “Wright Conserve Plus”) are medical devices that comprise a hip replacement system that involves the capping of a patient’s thigh bone with a synthetic ball and the replacement of that patient’s hip socket with a corresponding cup. Both the ball and the cup of the Wright Conserve devices are–at least in part–made of metal.
Like other metal-on-metal artificial hip replacements, the Wright Conserve causes dangerous side effects, and the FDA has received hundreds of adverse event reports on the Wright Conserve devices.
At least five people have filed Wright Conserve hip replacement lawsuits against the manufacturer, Wright Medical Technology, in federal court.
The Rottenstein Law Group compassionately advocates for those who have suffered dangerous Wright Conserve side effects. If you have had a Wright Conserve installed and believed it left you vulnerable, contact RLG for a free, confidential legal consultation immediately.
Several Products Make Up the Wright “Conserve” Hip Replacement Series
Wright Medical’s “Conserve” series of hip replacement implants includes the following four devices and components, which have been named in lawsuits:
- The Conserve Femoral Surface Replacement
- The Conserve Plus Total Resurfacing Hip System
- The Conserve Total A-Class Advanced Metal
- The Conserve Total Hip System
Metal-on-Metal Hip Replacements Might Cause Life-Threatening Side Effects
Device manufacturers marketed metal-on-metal hip replacements to relatively young patients, touting the devices’ durability. Many of these frequently untested implants eventually failed, however, injuring recipients and necessitating revision procedures. In fact, the failure rate of the metal-on-metal hip replacements manufactured by one device maker, DePuy Orthopedics, was so high that the company initiated a hip replacement recall.
The FDA now devotes an entire section of its web site to metal-on-metal hip replacements. It notes that all-metal hip recipients sometimes experience the following symptoms:
- Hip or groin pain;
- Difficulty standing or walking;
- Local swelling;
- Changes in gait or walking ability;
- Clicking sounds coming from the implant;
- Joint dislocation; and
In severe situations, a metal-on-metal hip replacement can fail entirely, requiring medical intervention. These devices fail because the metal components grind together, shedding cobalt and chromium metal ions in recipients’ bodies. Metal poisoning, called “metallosis” in the medical literature, can cause numerous other side effects:
- Tissue damage and death in the hip region;
- Weakening of heart muscles;
- Interference with the thyroid gland;
- Nerve damage; and
- Cognitive impairment.
Some research suggests that all-metal hips can cause kidney and bladder cancer as well.
If you received a Wright Conserve hip replacement and have experienced some of the symptoms listed above, contact your physician promptly. Only a doctor can diagnose Wright Conserve hip replacement failure symptoms.
Research Shows Wright Conserve Plus Fails More Often Than Most Other Hip Resurfacing Implants
The National Joint Registry for England and Wales released its Eighth Annual Report in September 2011, and it compared the Wright Conserve Plus to other hip resurfacing implants (Page 143). Revision rates for the Conserve Plus in instances excluding infection were 1.91 percent one year after implantation, 4.29 percent at three years, and 7.99 percent at five years. By contrast, all resurfacing implants required revision at rates of 1.14 percent at one year, 2.6 percent at three years, and 4.36 percent at five years. The Wright Conserve Plus’s revision rates were second only to the devices manufactured by DePuy , which have been recalled. Approximately one in twelve Wright Conserve Plus recipients will require a revision procedure five years after receiving the device. More may fail after five years.
Federal-level Wright Conserve Hip Replacements Consolidated
On December 16, 2011, plaintiffs filed a motion with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) to consolidate all Wright Conserve hip replacement lawsuits so that they are all pending before one federal court. On February 8, 2012, the Judicial Panel considered the evidence and transferred four federal-level Wright Conserve lawsuits to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia before District Judge William S. Duffey. This occurred despite Wright Medical’s assertion that there weren’t enough litigants to form an MDL case. One of the five plaintiffs’ cases was not included in the transfer order because he did not receive a Conserve device.
Multidistrict Litigation is not the same as a class action lawsuit, even though the basic principle of one party injuring many applies. Class action lawsuits usually involve a small injury to a large number of plaintiffs, with compensation divided equally among them. In defective medical device cases, though, the plaintiffs’ injuries differ, so it would be unfair to compensate them equally as in a class action. Instead, plaintiffs maintain their individual claims in MDL, but because their cases share common issues of fact and law, they participate in the same pretrial process. This means they benefit from the same discovery (document exchanges) and uniform rulings in motions before a single judge. After a few bellwether trials help the parties determine the amount of compensation plaintiffs might be able to obtain, the remaining plaintiffs negotiate to settle their cases or choose to go to trial themselves.
Importantly, plaintiffs in an MDL proceeding can obtain an amount of compensation relative to their individual injuries.
RLG’s Wright Conserve Cup Hip Replacement System Lawyers Will Make Things Easier
The process of demanding compensation for the harm you’ve suffered can be complicated, even if it doesn’t seem fair that you should have to go through even more trouble to be made whole again. The Wright Conserve Hip Replacement lawyers at the Rottenstein Law Group believe that obtaining legal satisfaction from those who harmed you shouldn’t require more hardship. That’s why we do everything we can to streamline the process, and we will file a Wright Conserve Hip Replacement lawsuit on your behalf, if necessary.
RLG will also keep you up to date on any Wright Conserve Hip Replacement class action lawsuits, FDA Wright Conserve Hip Replacement warnings, and Wright Conserve Hip Replacement FDA recall announcements. If you received a Wright Conserve Hip Replacement and believe it harmed you, contact RLG today.