An internal e-mail sent by a DePuy marketing executive voicing concern over one of the company’s metal-on-metal hip implants has been unveiled in the first of 10,000 DePuy ASR hip lawsuits to go to trial and could impact the litigation, according to Bloomberg.com.

Sent almost a year before the DePuy ASR hip recall affected 93,000 devices, Paul Berman, DePuy’s director of hip marketing sent the e-mail to “reiterate my concern” over the ASR artificial hip, in light of its suggested early hip failure rates.

In the letter sent Sept. 18, 2009, Berman recommended that Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy unit “discontinue the product from all but 10 surgeons because of failure rates with the broader universe.”

L.A. Jury to Review Mounting Evidence Related to DePuy ASR Hip Recall

This information was shown to the Los Angeles jury reviewing the DePuy ASR hip lawsuit filed by a former Montana prison guard who is alleging the device was defectively designed by the manufacturer.  The 65-year-old plaintiff is also saying he suffered high metal levels in his blood stream caused by metallic debris from the ASR hip implant.

Berman also said, “If the company feels the safety profile of the platform is not acceptable among the majority of surgeons it seems we should consider recalling it altogether.”

And that’s not all he wrote. According to testimony, Berman sent another message to a colleague on March 14, 2010—just a few months before the DePuy ASR hip recall of August 2010—to further reiterate his concern.

“With growing chatter in the market and commentary” from a British surgeon and others, “I still remain concerned with the safety of this product,” the e-mail stated.

The details of these e-mails were unveiled just a week after the surgeon who originally operated on the plaintiff candidly testified on his behalf. Peter Wendt’s Feb. 7 testimony said a company sales representative from DePuy warned him against using the ASR artificial hip on patients before the DePuy ASR hip recall of August 2010.

According to Wendt, the manufacturer told him, “There’s some problems with this, we are going to pull it. You really shouldn’t be using it anymore.”

Considering a DePuy ASR Hip Lawsuit? Contact Us Today.

If you experienced early hip failure, metallosis and/or were forced to undergo revision surgery after receiving the DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implant, you may be eligible to file a DePuy ASR hip lawsuit. Call a lawyer at Bernstein Liebhard LLP at (877) 779-1414 to learn more.

Published February 12, 2013 by