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Postoperative deep vein thrombosis (DVT) can be a significant problem after a Stryker hip revision surgery, leading to lethal complications. Many times, DVT is challenging to diagnose because classic clinical symptoms and signs are not always present. If the doctor is not suspicious or curious of obvious lacking signs, the individual can develop significantly serious problems, which could lead to death.
In 2009, the Stryker orthopedic medical device company began marketing its Rejuvenate and ABG II modular hip replacement systems. Originally, the hip implants were thought to be far superior to traditional metal-on-metal hip replacement devices. Unfortunately, by July 2012, Stryker voluntarily recalled their hip replacement systems due to significant issues including injury and death related to DVT and other medical problems.
As a result of the failed system, thousands of individuals underwent Stryker hip revision surgery, where the original implant was removed and replaced with new components. Unfortunately, revision surgery is significantly more complicated than the original procedure, taking up to six months to fully recover. Due to the extensive recovery time and challenging rehabilitation, many patients develop a variety of complications including deep vein thrombosis.
Complications from A Hip Revision Surgery
Once the revision surgery is complete, doctors often prescribe therapies and medicines in an effort to prevent blood clots from forming. The medication is often prescribed as a way to minimize the potential of developing DVT that can occur during and after surgery. Patients are often advised to wear special compression embolism stockings and perform ankle pumps in the first three days after the revision procedure. In addition, physiotherapists, doctors, and nurses will likely insist that the patient begin using the legs as quickly as possible once the operation is complete.
Additionally, doctors will prescribe PCA (patient-controlled analgesia) allowing the patient to control the amount of supplied pain medication through an IV during the first few days after surgery. These medications include dabigatran and rivaroxaban. However, it is often after the patient is released from doctors’ care that significant deep vein thrombosis can occur, due to inconsistent monitoring to detect symptoms. Common symptoms of DVT include:
- Swelling or pain at the revision surgery site
- Increased redness
- Incision drainage
- Pimples or bumps
If a blood clot migrates from the legs to the lungs or brain, it can cause instant death. Usually, DVT problems occur within the first few weeks after the operation. Any patient experiencing issues including swelling and pain in the associated hip or leg should seek medical care immediately. Doctors often prescribe anticoagulant medications as a way to reduce the potential of clotting. However, the medication often increases the risks of bleeding at the incision site.
Many medical experts note that hip revision surgeries tend to have increased risks with associated complications along with a reduced chance of success when compared to the original procedure. In addition, deep vein thrombosis can also occur in individuals that choose to avoid Stryker hip revision surgery. Often times, these individuals experience increased swelling and pain, which can leave the patient to a prolonged hospital stay until the medical condition has been controlled adequately.
Extensive Physiotherapy Exercises
One of the main factors leading to deep vein thrombosis as a direct result of Stryker hip revision surgery is a lack of performing physiotherapy exercises. Physiotherapists usually recommend performing these exercises once every day at a minimum. The exercises are designed to assist in recovery by restoring lost strength and movement in the hip. Without proper exercising, the diminished physical activity can cause significant problems including DVT.
Seeking Legal Assistance In The Event of DVT or Other Medical Complications
In an instant, any blood clot forming in the calf muscles can easily travel throughout the body to settle in the lungs (pulmonary embolism) or in the brain (cerebral embolism). Patients suffering from DVT complications or other medical issues caused by a hip replacement device should seek legal assistance to file a claim. The costs involved in undergoing revision surgery can be extensive and require adequate compensation to pay off mounting medical bills, recoup lost wages, and provide recompense for pain and suffering.
Stryker, and other orthopedic hip replacement device manufacturers, can be held legally liable for complications associated with their implants. Many patients requiring revision surgery are exposed to significant risks, especially after the second and third procedures. In fact, recurrence of any previous complication is always an issue, such as metallosis (metal toxicity), femur bone fracture, myositis ossification (improper bone growth) and thrombophlebitis (DVT).
Determining the next step should only be taken using legal advice. Thousands of individuals across the United States have already filed lawsuits against Stryker, Biomet, Zimmer Durom, DePuy and others to receive the financial compensation they deserve.