Court approves $20 million hip replacement settlement

700 Canadians settle hip replacement lawsuit: $20 million.

As many as 700 Canadians will be sharing one of the largest settlements for faulty medical devices: $20 million.

The money will be paid out to people who suffered complications from replacement hips made by Sulzer Orthopedics of Texas.

Quebec Superior Court approved the settlement reached last December between the lead plaintiff Judy Ferlatte and Sulzer, now known as Centerpulse Orthopedics.

Ferlatte, 60, had both her hips replaced in 2000 in two operations. She started to experience pain and a bone scan detected the cause: an oil residue prevented the bonding of the hip replacements to the bone. Many patients experienced intense pain and had difficultly walking.

Ferlatte had the faulty left hip replaced last October.

Many of the patients affected live in Quebec. Those eligible will receive payments from $1,500 to $225,000.

A U.S. federal judge approved a $1 billion settlement last year filed on behalf of 3,500 people in the U.S.

Sulzer recalled the hip replacements in December 2000. The company admitted 17,000 parts produced at its Texas plant were faulty.