In a Nutshell: What is wrong with Exactech Implants?

Thousands of Exactech knee, ankle, and hip replacement devices were recently recalled due to a defectively packaged polyethylene liner that could cause the implants to prematurely fail. This degradation of the products’ component parts could result in health risks and injuries, forcing several patients to have unnecessary corrective revision surgery. 

Patients who received an Exactech knee or ankle replacement and subsequently sustained injuries due to early failure of the device may be eligible for financial compensation. 

About the Exactech Recall

In February 2022, Exactech issued a recall for thousands of its knee and ankle replacement systems with polyethylene plastic inserts because the plastic may wear out sooner than expected. 

According to the manufacturer’s Urgent Medical Device Correction letter sent to surgeons, the reason behind the recall is the out-of-specification packaging that left the devices exposed to oxygen. This defect may lead to implant failure and necessitate revision surgery. Revision surgery tends to be more complicated and takes longer to perform than an initial joint replacement.

This is because the patient may require other specialized procedures to correct any damage that has occurred. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classified the recall as Class II. A Class II device recall means that the recalled liners could cause temporary or reversible adverse health effects.

What happens to medical devices exposed to oxygen?

Medical devices exposed to oxygen may undergo the process of oxidation, which can significantly degrade the component parts of devices. In the case of Exactech knee, ankle, and hip implants, oxidation can cause the polyethylene inserts to degrade over time, causing premature wear and ultimately, early device failure. 

Which Exactech medical devices have been recalled?

Around 140,000 products were pulled out of the market. The Exactech medical devices that were recalled include tibial inserts and liner components from these knee and ankle replacement systems: 

  • Optetrak
  • Optetrak Logic
  • Truliant
  • Vantage

Patients who were surgically implanted with any of the above insert systems are likely to have received units whose inserts or components were packaged in defective vacuum bags. Patients can contact their physician or the hospital where their surgery was performed to identify the device used for the operation and find out whether it is affected by the recall. 

What injuries are related to the recalled devices?

Potential injuries that may occur from a defective Exactech knee and ankle implant include:

  • Accelerated wear
  • Debris production
  • Bone loss
  • Component fatigue 
  • Cracking
  • Fracture
  • Pain
  • Revision Surgery

According to Exactech, inserts that have been manufactured since 2004 may have also been distributed in defective packaging. This means that tens of thousands of people could subsequently suffer from complications due to products that fail prematurely. 

Symptoms of Exactech Implant Failure

Surgeons have been instructed to keep in touch with patients who received an Exactech knee or ankle replacement device. However, you might not want to keep waiting for your doctor if you are already experiencing the following symptoms:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Inability to bear weight
  • Grinding noise in the knee or ankle
  • Instability in the knee, ankle, or hip
  • Bone degeneration
  • Clicking in the knee or ankle

When a failed implant is suspected, surgeons may examine the patient by conducting x-rays to determine the status of the plastic insert in the device. The results of the medical exam and the symptoms that the patient may be experiencing will predict how the situation is likely to turn out. 

If a patient is not experiencing any indications that the Exactech implant may have failed, surgical removal of the device is not recommended. However, patients who are experiencing clear symptoms of implant failure may need to consider corrective surgery as the most appropriate treatment option. 

Are you eligible to file an Exactech recall lawsuit?

You may be eligible to file a lawsuit against Exactech if you or your loved one:

  • Have a recalled Exactech knee, ankle, or hip replacement system surgically implanted
  • Experienced side effects due to Exactech implant failure
  • Required corrective surgery 

Medical device companies like Exactech have a legal obligation to make safe products that are free of any damages or defects that may harm a consumer. Exactech’s recall notice acknowledges that knee and ankle replacement implants made since 2004 were defective and have significantly higher overall revision rates. 

Therefore, the manufacturer can be held liable for placing a defective product in the hands of a consumer. If you are eligible to file an Exactech recall lawsuit, our reliable and experienced Exactech lawyers can help you navigate your legal options and maximize your compensation claim. 

Estimated Payout Value

As of writing, it is still difficult to ascertain how much Exactech lawsuits will be worth. This is because there have not been any settlements yet in the current Exactech implant cases, as the litigation is still in its early stages.

However, if you do have a case against the manufacturer, you may be able to recover financial compensation that could include:

  • Lost wages for time missed or will miss from work
  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering

Additionally, it is worth noting that the amount of compensation payout may also depend on the specific facts of an individual’s case. 

If you have a legal claim against the makers of the medical device, it is important to talk to an Exactech lawsuit attorney who can help you evaluate your case and identify what form of damages you can recover if you have a case.

There are also statute of limitations that vary from state to state.This sets the time limit for filing a claim. It’s important to talk to a legal expert to know how much time you still have to sue the company or manufacturer who harmed you.

Why You Should File an Exactech Lawsuit in 2023

After sustaining injuries or suffering from complications due to a medical device, you are likely to struggle with medical bills, lost income, pain, and emotional stress, among others. 

Seeking compensation is, therefore, also an important part of seeking justice. This is because an adequate financial compensation does not only serve justice, it also provides a financial security blanket for your future. 

However, we are well aware that the idea of pursuing legal action while going through pain and injuries can overwhelm you. But that is where we come in — we are here to take that pressure off of you so you can focus on what is most important — getting better. 

Filing an Exactech lawsuit means protecting your rights against those who harmed you for the sake of profits. But the clock is ticking — the sooner you get in touch with a lawyer, the better. This is because you are more likely to recall important details about your injury and still have access to key evidence the sooner you call a lawyer. 

Here at Drugwatcher, we work closely with Exactech lawsuit attorneys who can guide you through tricky legal procedures and make sure you achieve the financial compensation you justly deserve. Do not hesitate to contact us today for legal help.