Hip Implant Cases Explained by attorney Jim Higgins

Kacy Hagerty: Well, thousands of cases are pending right now on hip implants, so if you or someone you know has had an implant that’s been recalled, you need to know what to do. Attorney Jim Higgins with The Higgins Firm recently stopped by to tell us about one such case.

Hey, Jim, thanks for being here.

Jim Higgins: Thank you.

Kacy Hagerty: All right, let’s talk about this one case that recently went to trial. Tell us what happened here.

Jim Higgins: Yes, this is a case and we’ve talked a little bit about these hip recalls in a lot of people in Middle Tennessee, in a lot of my clients we were handling these cases and have gone through it where they had a DePuy Johnson & Johnson hip implanted. They got a recall letter and a lot of my folks have had to have them removed and reinserted this. And, it’s a really hard thing to go through...

Kacy Hagerty: Yes, tough thing.

Jim Higgins: ...if you’ve already been through one hip replacement. Well, there’s been about a thousand of these cases filed and the first one went to trial in California finally got there after all of the discovery, the juries (are up for) about seven days, and they rendered a verdict of a little over $8 million.

Kacy Hagerty: Wow. OK.

Jim Higgins: So, they took it seriously, you know, and I think they realized how hard it was for people to go through. There - I see a verdict like that, I always see it as a message to the company to, you know, you need to put you people and your clients over your profits. And, it will have a big impact in all of these cases that are pending right now.

Kacy Hagerty: Absolutely. So, put them first. You know, what about folks out there who have been notified themselves that they have a defective hip or maybe somebody they know, what should they do?

Jim Higgins: Yes. Well, the first thing when we get these calls is - and it’s easy for me to say, but just don’t freak out, you know? I have a lot of people that have gotten a recall and they go and get it checked out to the doctor, and it’s OK. What will happen is they’ll do a blood - go to your physician, that’s number one.

Kacy Hagerty: Right.

Jim Higgins: They’ll do a blood test. They’ll see if there’s any metal breakdown in there. I will tell you many of the Johnson & Johnson, the DePuy hip, it’s been out for a while. So, most of those - if you haven’t gotten a letter, you’re probably not on that list. You can always call your doctor and check. There is another hip and we’re taking in some cases on right now, a Stryker hip.

Kacy Hagerty: Stryker, OK.

Jim Higgins: It’s what it’s called and we’re seeing similar problems. But, number one, call your doctor and then, you know what, just - that you’re welcome to call our office. We can find out when the replacement was. If they happen to have to one of these recall hips, we can tell them what their rights are. If they want to do something about it, you know, I don't think people should have to pay for their own medical care to replace this. I don't think they should have to suffer those loss wages...

Kacy Hagerty: Definitely not.

Jim Higgins: ...and pain and suffering, and so we’ll talk about those things. And, if they want us to help them through that, we’ll be glad to.

Kacy Hagerty: All right, so just give you call and you’ll walk them to the process.

Jim Higgins: That’s it.

Kacy Hagerty: All right, you’re helping out a lot of people.

Jim Higgins: Thank you.

Kacy Hagerty: Thanks, Jim.

The Higgins Firm is serving Tennessee. Give them a call at 615-353-0930 or check them out at higginsfirm.com.