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Johnson & Johnson faces lawsuit due to product liability

People across the country, including residents of Billings, Montana, may be familiar with the product manufacturer, Johnson & Johnson, for their medical products. However, the world's biggest medical device manufacturer is under scrutiny for its hip implants, which have been recalled.

According to a report, a products liability lawsuit was filed against the company for their artificial hip implants. The attorney of the plaintiff considered the hip implants a defective product while the company was not addressing the safety of the patient. The plaintiff, a 65-year-old man, was previously a prison guard in Montana. As stated in the complaint, after receiving an ASR XL hip implant in 2007, the man was in a great deal of pain because of the defective hip and other health complications. The man suffered difficulty while walking and was in continual pain.

Allegedly, Johnson & Johnson was aware of the defects of the hip implants before the plaintiff had the implant put in. The plaintiff claimed that the manufacturing company failed to warn patients about the hip implant's risks. However, the company denied the claims, saying that the plaintiff's worsened condition was because of his diabetes, kidney cancer and other medical conditions.

In addition to this, Johnson & Johnson recalled an estimated 93,000 ASR artificial hip implants in 2010. A statement from the Consumers Union's Safe Patient Project also said that the ASR hip implant device and other metal hips have been used by almost 750,000 people throughout the country, including Montana. They noted that many of those patients have sustained serious medical problems.

While it is common for product manufacturers to be concerned about the profit they can make after selling a certain product, they also need to regard the safety of its users and consumers. Any product that was created to provide a cure for ailments or health problems should have its efficiency scrutinized. If the manufacturer fails to do so, the company can be held liable for the damages incurred by the user in connection with the defective product. The damages may include compensation for the victim's medical expenses and other related costs necessary to achieve recovery.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "J&J gambled on hip implant safety, lawyer alleges," Chad Terhune, Feb. 28, 2013

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