Johnson&Johnson
J&J headquarters at One Johnson & Johnson Plaza in New Brunswick, New Jersey.WikiCommons/Ekem

A U.S. federal court has asked Johnson & Johnson (J&J) to pay $500 million to five patients, who alleged they suffered from injuries after using the brand's Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implants.

The jury after a two-month trial declared the hip implants were defectively designed and J&J has failed to warn the public about their risks, the Reuters reported.

The jury has asked the J&J to pay $140 million in total compensatory damages and about $360 million in punitive damages to the five patients, Mark Lanier, lead trial counsel for the patients told the news agency.

The patients, who received the hip implants said the design flaws caused the devices to fall more frequently and quickly than expected, leading to tissue injuries, bone erosion and high concentration of metal in their blood.

They said Johnson & Johnson had described its metal-on-metal hip implants as durable and safe, despite being aware of its risks. The brand has also been accused of aggressively promoting these hip implants for use among younger patients.

The company stopped selling its hip implant devices in 2013 and paid $2.5 billion to settle more than 7,000 lawsuits.

J&J was earlier cleared by a US federal court trial in 2014 involving its hip implants devices.

In February 2016, a U.S. jury reportedly asked the American brand to pay $72 million to a 62-year old woman's family, after she died of cancer due to prolonged use of the company's talcum powder.

"There are thousands of these cases, and J&J needs to get responsible," Lanier added.

J&J's lawyer, John Beisner said the punitive damages could be reduced to $10 million.

[1 lakh = 100,000 | 1 crore = 10 million | 100 crore = 1 billion]