Lawsuits Continue to be Filed over Transvaginal Mesh
By Bill O'Mara, Virginia Dangerous Devices Attorney
A mesh device that was meant to correct a debilitating condition in women led to one of the largest mass tort actions brought in the last five years over a dangerous medical device.
Surgical mesh has been used for more than six decades to correct conditions such as abdominal hernias but the development of a vaginal product in the 1990s ended up causing pain and serious complications for thousands of women.
Surgeons started using mesh products to treat pelvic organ prolapse (POP) in the 1970s. The first vaginal mesh product was approved 20 years later in 1996, for treatment of stress urinary incontinence. Transvaginal mesh for the treatment of vaginal prolapse was first approved in 2002.
The use of mesh products for vaginal prolapse, a condition associated with ageing or childbirth, raised a lot of questions about the adequacy of the testing regime.
In July 2011, the US Food and Drug Administration announced that patients who were being treated for pelvic organ prolapse with a surgical mesh may face a greater risk of suffering mesh complications than women who used other surgical treatments.
The major complications included damage to organs, bowel and bladder perforation, urinary infections, chronic pain and vaginal scarring. Women who have been harmed say the manufacturers of these products failed to warn them of the risks.
Thousands of Lawsuits Are Filed Over Transvaginal Mesh
We have already seen thousands of claims filed over transvaginal mesh by women who have suffered terrible consequences from using this product. Some large jury verdicts have also been handed down.
On May 28, 2015, a woman was awarded $100 million by a Delaware State Court to compensate her for permanent injuries she suffered from the Boston Scientific Corporation’s mesh product. The ruling came soon after the company announced it would pay $119 million for about 3,000 claims.
This year, lawyers representing women who claim to have been injured by Caldera Medical’s mesh implants, proposed a blanket class action against the company. More than 2,000 lawsuits are pending as part of an $11.75 million settlement. The deadline to join the claim is May 2 2016.
C.R. Bard and Johnson & Johnson are among the other mesh manufacturers that face multiple lawsuits. J&J’s Ethicon division is reported to have been one of the slowest to offer settlements. It also faces the highest number of federal lawsuits although four lawsuits were settled for an undisclosed amount a year ago. We see numerous lawsuits being filed against Johnson & Johnson for a range of dangerous products from talcum powder linked to ovarian cancer to FLQ antibiotics.
Time is running out to make a claim if you have been injured by a transvaginal mesh product. Call us at (757) 455-0077 to talk to a Virginia dangerous drugs and medical devices attorney