Consumers should be able to trust that the products they buy are safe for their intended uses. When an unsafe product causes injury, the consumer should be compensated for damages.
Product liability is the legal theory that can hold designers, manufacturers and others accountable when defects in their products injure people. It often comes up in cases involving injury from defective parts in cars, toys and other general consumer products. Some of the more difficult cases involve medical devices.
Medical devices must go through extensive testing before the FDA approves them for use. However, sometimes problems don't show up until much later. For example, two types of DePuy metal hip implants began to degrade years after they had been implanted in patients, causing pain and other serious health problems.
Tens of thousands of patients received hip implants using the two devices before the problem was well understood by doctors or patients. More than 700 people have filed related lawsuits against DuPuy and other companies in its corporate structure.
The damages in these cases can be very high. The injured suffer terrible pain and other problems, and the only way to resolve their medical issues is to go through more surgery, with all its attendant risks, expenses and complications. Juries have returned verdicts in the patients' favor in many of these cases, and some have awarded the injured awards well over $1 million.
Product liability claims involving hip implants or other medical devices can be very complex. Just to present the evidence requires arranging testimony from expert witnesses, such as doctors and medical device engineers. The injured and their families should seek out help from a personal injury attorney with experience in these difficult issues.