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Shoulder Pain Pumps

CaseyGerry is currently not accepting cases against the makers of harmful intra-articular pain pumps which are believed to be the cause of postarthroscopic glenohumeral chondrolysis (“PAGCL,” or commonly known as chondrolysis) in shoulder surgery patients. Chondrolysis is a condition which occurs when the normal cartilage cells of a joint are suddenly destroyed leading to a rapid progression of severe arthritis. The shoulder pain pumps are used to deliver various anesthetics directly into the joint via an implanted catheter during the days immediately following arthroscopic surgical procedures.

Between 2006 and 2008, 35 cases of chondrolysis (primarily in the shoulder) were reported to the FDA where the patient was administered continuous intra-articular infusions of local anesthetics. (32 of those patients were administered bupivacaine in the pump.) A study published in The American Journal of Sports Medicine suggests that the continuous presence of anesthetics within the joint cause the cartilage to deteriorate resulting in bone-on-bone contact.

Unfortunately, chondrolysis is a devastating and permanent injury, which can lead to future surgeries and lifelong pain and disability. Treatment of chondrolysis can include multiple costly surgeries, and in some cases requires a prosthetic joint replacement.

These shoulder pain pumps have been marketed and sold by a variety of manufacturers, including: Stryker Corporation, I-Flow Corporation, BREG, Inc. and DJO, LLC.

The most common devices used are:

  • Stryker®
  • Stryker® PainPump 1®
  • Stryker® PainPump 2®
  • PainPump® Blockaid®
  • I-Flow®
  • On-Q® Painbuster®
  • Donjoy®
  • Donjoy® Pain Control Device
  • Accufuser® Plus Pain Pump

Symptoms of chondrolysis include:

  • Continued Joint Pain or Stiffness
  • Popping or Grinding During Articulation
  • Limited Range of Motion
  • Decreased Strength


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