Attorney Rick Piliponis Discusses Hip Replacement Problems, Defects and Recalls

Female: Johnson & Johnson recently issued a recall on a faulty hip replacement product. Now, if that product was used on you and you’re having problems with it, you may need to talk to an attorney.

Rick Piliponis with The Higgins Firm is here to walk us through the steps to determine if you have a case. Rick, welcome to More at Midday.

Rick Piliponis: Thanks for having me.

Female: Good to see you. All right. So how does someone know if may be their doctor used a hip replacement product that has been recalled, what do we need to know?

Rick Piliponis: Well, you should be getting – there have been a couple that have been recalled. There is a Zimmer Durom cup and there’s also – Johnson & Johnson has a couple of different variations of a hip that has been recalled. What, you know, probably have happened is you’ll probably get some sort of contact from your doctor…

Female: OK.

Rick Piliponis: … because there is a recall, so they have to proactively go out and try and give people information that, “Hey, you may have problems with your hip and it may be related to the hip itself.”

Female: OK. So they are supposed to let you know. Now, what are some of the signs and symptoms of a faulty hip replacement product specifically some of these are the Johnson & Johnson products?

Rick Piliponis: Well, unfortunately, a lot of the signs and symptoms are symptoms that you would expect to have once you have a replaced hip. You’ve got some unexplained hip pain.

Female: Oh, OK.

Rick Piliponis: You’ve got weight-bearing problems, you’ve got problems dealing with your thigh or your groin pain, pain with popping, pain while you’re walking. So you – a lot of those you may expect at least in the – initially when you’re recovering from your hip surgery, you say, “Hey, this just may be me. It may be something that I’ve done,” when unfortunately, a lot of that can be related to the problem with the hip.

Female: OK. So if you do have a problem, let’s talk about what are some of the steps that people need to take, what do they need to do?

Rick Piliponis: Well, first off, you’re going to need to talk to your doctor.

Female: OK.

Rick Piliponis: I mean your doctor makes the decision on whether or not you need to have some sort of future medical care or if your symptoms match the problems that you’re having or the problems that are associated with this recall.

Female: Got you. Make sure your physician understands the extent of whatever your problems are specifically.

Rick Piliponis: Yes, and we always tell people, “You know, do what you can to keep a journal.” If you – if you think something is going wrong like that…

Female: Right.

Rick Piliponis: … keep a journal, keep something that you can remind yourself that, “Oh, when I stood up that day, I had – I had popping problems or when I sat down, I felt something or I can't stand long time when I should be able to.”

Female: OK, a journal of specific information always helps.

Rick Piliponis: Sure.

Female: Discuss your treatment options with your physician and their risks.

Rick Piliponis: Sure. Any time that you’ve got a recall of something that’s inside your body…

Female: Right.

Rick Piliponis: … your treatment options are usually pretty limited. I mean if you have a faulty hip in there, they’re going to have to go in and they’re going to have to take it back out. And that – you know, usually, this is a surgery that people save and wait and wait and wait so that they’ll have to do it once.

Female: Right.

Rick Piliponis: And they wouldn't have to do it again.

Female: They don’t want to have to go through this another time. Make a personal assessment of the risks of treatment and then you also say contact an attorney, make sure that you do have your evidence and you keep everything, all the details, and that’s where obviously some sort of journal would come into play.

Rick Piliponis: Sure. And any kind of – any kind of products liability case or any kind of case where you’re wanting to get some money back or get something back for what you’re going through, it’s best to, I would say, contact an attorney because it’s a hard process. It’s not an easy process to go through and you don’t want to miss something just because you don’t, you know, know what you’re looking for.

Female: And you could help them walk through all of it. Rick Piliponis, good to see you.

Female: Thanks for having me.

Female: Thank you for your time today. Hey, to get in touch with The Higgins Law Firm, you can give them a call, the number is right there, 615-353-0930 or you can log on to More at Midday section of wsmv.com for a link to their website.