If you received a knee, ankle, or hip replacement from the manufacturer Exactech between 2004 and 2021, you might be able to receive compensation through a mass tort.

Exactech initiated a widespread product recall in August 2021 after discovering that hundreds of thousands of its joint replacements contained faulty packaging, causing premature wear. As a result, countless individuals have experienced complications from their implants and must undergo revision surgery earlier than expected.

This guide will discuss the Exactech joint replacement recall and what you should do if you’ve received a faulty Exactech knee, hip, or ankle implant.

What Is the Exactech Joint Implant Recall?

Exactech is a company based in Gainesville, Florida, which manufactures and markets innovative implants and surgical instruments. For several decades, the company has manufactured knee, hip, and ankle replacements.

In August 2021, Exactech recalled thousands of joint replacement devices produced between 2004 and 2021. The manufacturer found that these devices utilized a faulty packaging system.

Exactech packages its joint implants in oxygen-resistant vacuum bags. However, the company found that thousands of devices used faulty packaging in non-conforming bags. While these bags were oxygen-resistant, they did not include an additional ethylene vinyl alcohol layer necessary to enhance the implant’s oxygen resistance.

This lower oxygen resistance allowed oxygen to diffuse to the plastic insert, leading to faster oxidation than the company stated or intended for its implants.

The Exactech implant recall has affected over 147,000 implants manufactured since 2004.

Recalled Exactech Devices

Exactech has posted a list of its recalled devices on its website, including their product codes, serial numbers, and descriptions. Specific models of the following implants are part of this recall:

  • Truliant Tibial Inserts
  • Connexion GXL Acetabular Liner
  • Optetrak
  • Optetrak Logic
  • Vantage Total Ankle System

If you believe your surgeon used one of these implants in your joint replacement surgery, you can contact your surgeon to receive the product code or serial number. Your surgeon may also reach out to you directly if they believe you received a recalled implant.

Complications From Recalled Exactech Implants

The recalled Exactech joint implants have caused numerous complications for patients. Many of these complications do not occur until several years after the joint replacement surgery, as the oxidation slowly wears down the implant over time.

Faulty Exactech joint implants have caused the following complications in patients:

  • Inflammation
  • Infection
  • Muscle damage
  • Tibial loosening
  • Bone damage
  • Severe pain
  • Disassociation of the insert

Some patients have sought treatments to lessen the symptoms associated with these issues. However, many patients who received faulty Exactech devices will need premature joint replacement revision surgery.

In a revision joint replacement surgery, a surgeon would remove some or all of the parts of the implant and replace them with new ones. Knowing that the Exactech joint implants are faulty, most surgeons would opt to remove them entirely and replace them with longer-lasting implants.

Exactech Recall Timeline

June 28, 2021

In June of 2021, Exactech sent an urgent communication to surgeons and healthcare facilities that had purchased its Connexion GXL hip replacement devices. This communication stated that many Connexion GXL patients had experienced premature wear on their implants, causing acetabular and proximal osteolysis.

August 31, 2021

On August 31, 2021, Exactech recalled thousands of knee and ankle joint replacement products manufactured between 2004 and 2021. The company stated that certain implants manufactured over the previous 17 years did not have adequate packaging, causing oxygen to diffuse to the implant and degrade it.

February 7, 2022

In February 2022, Exactech expanded its recall to include all non-conforming UHMWPE inserts, regardless of shelf life. This recall now includes hip replacement devices along with knee and ankle implants.

Exactech Joint Implant Legal Action

Exactech has offered to help pay for joint revision surgeries for some patients who received faulty Exactech implants. However, since the recall, numerous lawsuits have stated that this action is not enough to compensate victims of these defective implants.

Lawsuits across the country have raised the following allegations against Exactech:

  • Exactech was aware of the issues associated with its implant devices for many years before it officially recalled them.
  • Exactech knew that its knee implants were associated with premature knee replacement failures yet failed to investigate this problem until years later.
  • Exactech failed to warn surgeons and consumers about the potential for its implants to degrade prematurely.
  • Exactech delayed issuing its joint implant recall, creating more victims in the meantime.
  • Exactech continued selling defective knee replacements while hiding information from consumers.
  • Exactech prioritized profits over consumers’ health and safety.

Exactech notified doctors and other healthcare professionals of its recalled devices and asked these individuals to advise their patients. However, this method of communication left ample room for misinformation and miscommunication.

Because the recall includes implants produced from 2004 until 2021, many surgeons who conducted joint replacement surgeries using these faulty products are no longer in contact with their patients. Some of these surgeons have retired or passed away since 2004.

What Should Patients With Fault Exactech Joint Implants Do?

If you believe you received a recalled Exactech joint implant during a joint replacement surgery, you should first verify that the implant meets the specifications for recalled devices. You can compare the serial number or product code to the exact recalled devices on the Exactech website.

Once you have confirmed that your joint implant falls under the product recall, we recommend talking to your physician about the best steps to prevent complications from this faulty implant. For example, you may opt for revision surgery earlier than planned. Alternatively, your physician may recommend other treatments as necessary.

Finally, you may be able to receive financial compensation through a mass tort lawsuit. At Mass Tort Resource, we work hard to ensure those recall victims like you have the resources and information necessary to make informed decisions about product recall lawsuits. We also assist attorneys in handling mass tort lawsuits and help to provide education about ongoing mass torts.

We’d be happy to help you understand your options regarding this recall. Contact our team at Mass Tort Resource today at 844-636-7459 or fill out the form on our site to schedule a free consultation.