Total Knee Replacement Surgery

Total knee replacement or “arthroplasty” is a major operation. Surgeons replace damaged, injured or worn parts of a knee joint with artificial components. These manufactured knee parts may be inserted into the femur (upper leg or thigh bone) and tibia (large bone in the lower leg). Typically, implanted knee replacement parts are cemented (glued) to living bone, however, the femoral component of the ZIMMER NEX-GEN CR-FLEX Knee Replacement System was designed to be installed without cement or epoxy. This has caused controversy and has led to litigation about alleged loosening and early failure of this Zimmer Implant.

Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex Knee Replacement Claims

Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex knee replacement components may be experiencing an unusually high rate of failure.

A Zimmer knee implant recall has not yet been announced, however, it has been claimed that the NexGen CR-Flex is related to numerous premature knee replacement failures. Knee implants should last 10 – 15 years, but some Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex Devices have allegedly become loose and failed within three years.

Patients experiencing poor results associated with a Zimmer knee implant may suffer pain, reduced range of motion and/or loosening of the components of the device following surgery.

At the 2010 American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons Conference, two knee surgeons discussed findings from their study tending to show that the Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex knee replacement failed as often as 9% of the time. These surgeons claim that complications associated with Zimmer knee implants necessitating revision surgeries could be even greater. This study asserts that 36% of Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex knee replacements became loose within two years after surgery.

Researchers from Rush University Medical Center in Chicago reviewed records from over 100 patients receiving the Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex knee replacement. They found that nine patients needed follow-up surgery because of knee pain and implant loosening. Moreover, the researchers found that 40 of the patients showed signs of loose Zimmer knee implants and alleged that these problems were not related to patient type, surgical technique or specific surgeons.

The Zimmer NexGen CR-Flex differs from most artificial knee devices for several reasons, most notably it was designed to be attached to the big bone above the knee (femur or thigh bone) without the use of cement, glue or epoxy. Regrettably, relying on natural in-growth between the artificial implant and bone without a bonding agent (cement, glue or epoxy) may not provide an effective bond. This may result in a “loose” implant which is not securely affixed to the bone and/or the bond may loosen over time or come apart completely. A knee implant that is not securely fastened to the bone can allow friction and micro-motion, become unstable, cause pain and breakdown of the neighboring bone, and limit the mobility of the patient.

Indications of a loose Zimmer Nex-Gen CR knee implant could include a stiff, painful knee, altered gait (limping), limited range of movement of the knee, and pain upon weight bearing.

If you suffer from knee pain, a loose feeling in the area of the artificial joint, difficulty walking, or other complications following a Zimmer knee implant surgery, please call me toll free at (810) 603-3400 for a free consultation.

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