Jon Campisi Dec. 5, 2012, 8:48am

A 65-year-old Colorado man has filed a mass tort products liability claim against the

makers of the Artelon Spacer Implant over allegations that the device became defective inside his body and had to be surgically removed.

The lawsuit, which was filed as a short-form complaint in the Master Artelon Spacer Implant Litigation consolidated at Philadelphia’s Common Pleas Court, alleges that Glenn Frank, of Denver, had to have the device removed from his left hand five years after it was surgically implanted inside his limb at a Denver hospital.

The original implantation surgery had taken place on Jan. 22, 2007 while the removal surgery occurred on March 8 of this year, the lawsuit shows.

The defendants named in the complaint are Small Bone Innovations Inc., Artimplant USA Inc. and Artimplant AB.

The suit contains counts of negligence, negligent failure to warn, negligent misrepresentation, strict liability, and loss of consortium.

The plaintiffs claim economic loss, pain and suffering, personal injury and loss of consortium.

The plaintiffs are being represented by attorneys with the Locks Law Firm in Philadelphia, which specializes in cases of medical malpractice and products liability.

According to the firm, the Artimplant Arleton CMC Spacer is a medical device marketed to those with thumb disabilities, but the product has become the subject of litigation due to its apparent dangerous and defective nature.

The device is known to cause extremely painful side effects in some patients, the firm claims.

More specifically, part of the device, while it’s designed to decompose within the hand without causing problems, has actually caused giant cell reactions to the foreign materials that have lead to inflammatory synovitis with “incredible pain,” swelling, loss of motion and need for additional surgery.

The firm accuses the device’s manufacturers of producing and distributing the product without warning patients about the dangerous side effects.

The record shows that a master complaint for the mass tort case was created at the Philadelphia Common Pleas Court back in mid April 2011.

In an order released in June of that year, the record shows, Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Sandra Mazer Moss appointed lawyer David D. Langfitt, of the Locks Law Firm, as lead plaintiffs’ counsel in the litigation, while Philadelphia attorneys Walter “Pete” H. Swayze, III and Megan E. Grossman, of Segal, McCambridge, Singer & Mahoney, were appointed lead defense counsel.

The court docket sheet for the master complaint shows that the litigation appears to be overseen by Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Arnold New.


The master complaint case ID number is 110401932 while the case ID number for the Frank filing is 121103217.

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