Time Running Out For De Puy LCS Knee Implant Patients

Deadline Approaching For Victims Of Medical Device


The deadline for patients looking to seek justice regarding injuries caused by failures of the De Puy LCS patello-femoral implant is likely to expire soon.

The knee implant was recalled by the De Puy International Limited in 2009 following high reported failure rates in the 2008 and 2009 Australian National Joint Registry. A number of small studies performed in the UK also indicated a significantly higher than average failure rate.

Patients fitted with the implants suffered from problems including fracture of the polyethylene backed kneecap component; release of metal debris caused by grinding of the metal thigh bone and knee cap components; and dissociation of the polyethylene kneecap component from its metal back. These problems generally lead to the need for a revision procedure to replace the component, or a total knee replacement.

De Puy International Limited settled a class action brought by 430 patients injured by the prosthesis in Australia, with an average settlement award of around $30,000.00.

Although use of the implant has not been widespread in the UK, studies have shown that a significant number of patients have suffered from early failure of the implant.

If you or a loved one has been injured or fallen ill due to a faulty or defective product, our personal injury claims team could help you claim compensation. View our Product Liability Claims page for more information.

Expert Opinion
The outcome statistics for the LCS patello-femoral implants have been poor, and that seems to have been reflected in the product recall and the settlement of the Australian cases.

"Injured patients in this country have similar rights of action to those in Australia. Potential claimants may seek compensation under the Consumer Protection Act 1987 or the law of negligence and those claims should stand reasonable prospects of success.

"However, they must bear in mind the effect of the Limitation Act 1980, which imposes time limits for the commencement of claims. Claims for defective products must be issued in Court both within three years of the date of the injury and within 10 years of the date that the product was 'put into circulation'. If either time limit has expired at the time proceedings are issued, the claim may not be able to proceed.

"Some LCS products will now be reaching their 10 year expiry date. In addition, because the product was recalled in 2009, many patients who have suffered early failure within three or four years will now be reaching the 3 year deadline which starts to run from the date of the injury.

"Limitation in personal injury claims is construed strictly by the Courts. Any patients who believe that they might have a claim arising from the failure of this product should seek advice on their claim immediately to ensure that their rights are properly preserved."
Matthew Newbould, Solicitor