Girardi | Keese

DePuy Hip Implant Trial: Doctor Notes

In 2008, a physician consultant sent a note to Johnson & Johnson executives telling them to slow marketing on the DePuy ASR hip implant. The doctor wrote that the Articular Surface Replacement was poorly designed. He was not alone; other doctors also recommended that the company stall hip implant marketing efforts.

Johnson & Johnson did not listen. Instead, the company moved forward and refused to recall the defective medical devices until 2010.

Why didn't the doctors tell other doctors about the hip implant problems? Why did they stay silent when they have an ethical obligation to warn other doctors when a drug or medical device is defective?

Doctors provide many reasons for their reluctance to report medical defects, including:

  • They may fear losing their jobs as consultants
  • They may have received compensation from the company that makes the defective device
  • They may be too busy to file reports with the FDA

Perhaps most importantly, they may fear facing medical malpractice or ridicule from the manufacturer and others in the medical field. Perhaps the product is found to be safe and the surgeons caused the plaintiffs' injuries. Or perhaps the doctors will become victims of smear campaigns.

Then there is the fear that their message will go unheard. According to the New York Times, this is what happened to one British physician who attempted to tell surgeons about the hip implant. Johnson & Johnson executives told him that he was the only doctor having problems and questioned whether it was him, not the device.

If doctors do not speak out, then who should? Unfortunately, like in the DePuy hip implant case, it often falls on the shoulders of the victims to bring forth their story in the court system.

Source: The New York Times, "Doctors Who Don't Speak Out," Barry Meier, Feb. 15, 2013

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

DISCLAIMER: Case results depend upon a variety of factors unique to each case. Case results do not guarantee or predict a similar result. Any testimonials and endorsements at this site do not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter or potential legal matter.


The Soto Verdict

Girardi | Keese attorneys have won a $2.3M verdict for a Long Beach resident run over by a Parks & Rec truck. Read more here.

The Madero Verdict

Attorney Christopher T. Aumais persuaded a San Bernardino County jury to deliver an  exceptionally high verdict in an area known for low jury awards.

A Champion of Justice

Partner Amy Fisch Solomon was a Champion of Justice in 2015, proving that success in law isn't just about the size of your verdict or settlement.

Own a VW Diesel?

Read about VW's emissions scandal and 
our class action against the automaker.


Learn About Our Referral Network Read More

Our Attorneys

Meet our award-winning team Read More


The true measure of a lawyer isn’t the awards, but what the awards say about the lawyer: dedication and commitment to the client.

Review Us
Super Lawyers Distinguished AV | Lexis Nexis | Martindale-Hubbell | Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability American Association For Justice Consumer Attorneys Association Of Los Angeles Consumer Attorneys California Supreme Court Icon 7 Icon Best Lawyers | Best Law Firms 2014 | U.S. News American Board of Trial Advocates Law Dragon America's Top 100 Attorneys | Lifetime Achievement Martindale-Hubbell | AV Preeminent | Peer Review Rated For Highest Level of Professional Excellence | 2017