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Johnson & Johnson's DePuy Orthopaedics unit played "Russian roulette" with its ASR metal-on-metal hip implant, a jury heard yesterday in the closing arguments of a high-profile personal injury lawsuit; J&J denies the allegations, saying the plaintiff's ills were due to other medical problems.

DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implants

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) ignored serious problems with its DePuy ASR metal-on-metal hip implant in a game of "Russian roulette" the company played with patients' safety, a plaintiff's lawyer in a high-profile personal injury lawsuit said during the case's closing arguments yesterday.

New Brunswick, N.J.-based J&J "knew this hip was defective long before [plaintiff Loren] Kransky got it," Brian Panish told the jury, according to the LA Times. "They wanted to play Russian roulette with patients. This defendant didn't care about patient safety."

Johnson & Johnson attorney Michael Zellers countered that Kransky's underlying medical conditions – including diabetes, kidney cancer and a hip infection – were the cause of the problems he tried to blame on the ASR implant.

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