Virginia Transvaginal Mesh Injury Attorneys
Transvaginal Mesh Causes Injuries, New Surgery and Lawsuits
As well as dangerous drugs, a number of surgical devices have caused massive harm to patients. Transvaginal mesh, which is used for pelvic organ prolapse repair surgery, has injured women and caused numerous complications. There are currently thousands of lawsuits pending against the mesh manufacturers in courts across the country.
What is Transvaginal Mesh?
Surgical mesh has been used for more than 60 years to correct abdominal hernias. The woven material is placed beneath the skin to patch the abdominal hole and block intestines and other tissues from protruding through the abdominal wall.
It is made from biological materials or synthetic materials like polyester fibers, polypropylene, polytetrafluoroethylene, or stainless steel. Although it was successfully used for thousands of hernia repairs every year, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has received reports of adverse reactions to the mesh, adhesions and injury to organs, nerves or blood vessels.
In the 1970s, doctors began using mesh products to treat pelvic organ prolapse (POP). The first vaginal mesh product was approved in 1996, for treatment of stress urinary incontinence. A mesh product for treatment of vaginal prolapse was first approved in 2002.
In recent years surgeons have been inserting the mesh through the vagina. Transvaginal mesh has proved to be a controversial device that has been disastrous for thousands of women.
Why is Transvaginal Mesh Used?
Mesh is used to treat pelvic organ prolapse. Typically it is implanted at the time of a hysterectomy or as a separate surgery. Pelvic organ prolapse occurs when the bladder, the top of the vagina, the rectum, the uterus or bowel, drops from its normal position.
Pelvic prolapse is more likely to occur as women age and when one or more of the pelvic organs may stop working properly. It’s a debilitating condition that’s associated with incontinence.
The mesh is intended to form a “hammock” that maintains the correct position of the organs.
What Are the Complications Associated with Transvaginal Mesh?
On July 13, 2011, the FDA announced that patients undergoing pelvic organ prolapse repair with a surgical mesh may face a greater risk for mesh complications than women pursuing other surgical treatments. A number of serious complications have been associated with the mesh. Many of them require corrective surgery but it’s not always enough to remedy the damage or personal injuries.
The complications include:
- Damage to organs
- Bowel and Bladder Perforation
- Chronic pain
- Vaginal scarring
- Urinary problems and infections
How Many Lawsuits Have Been Filed over Transvaginal Mesh?
Thousands of women have sued mesh manufacturers over complications from using mesh. As of November 2014 in excess of 65,000 transvaginal mesh lawsuits were filed against manufacturers, including C.R. Bard, Ethicon (a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary), Boston Scientific and American Medical Systems. While some lawsuits have been settled or resulted in awards to the plaintiffs, many of them are still pending.
What Are The Women Claiming?
The women in these cases say the manufacturers of transvaginal mesh products failed to warn patients and doctors about this increased risk of using mesh vaginally. They are seeking compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering and other damages.
The Verdicts on Transvaginal Mesh
U.S. District Judge Joseph Goodwin has warned the manufacturers to cut their losses, urging them to settle numerous outstanding claims and avoid huge court costs and even more losses. There have already been some significant awards against the device makers and some companies have offered settlements. Notable cases include:
- 1. A federal jury in West Virginia awarded $3.27 million to Jo Husky in September 2014. She claimed her Ethicon Gynecare TVT mesh product caused permanent injuries and the company failed to warn her.
- 2. In 2013, a New Jersey jury returned an $11 million verdict against Ethicon for injuries caused to a woman by its Gynecare Prolift.
- 3. In 2012, a jury in California returned a $5.5 million verdict for Christine Scott against Bard. It included $5 million for the plaintiff’s medical expenses, her pain and suffering and other damages, and $500,000 for her husband’s loss of consortium claim.
- 4. In 2014, a $2 million award was made against Bard for damage caused by a mesh product to Donna Cisson. The jury decided that Bard did not adequately test its Avaulta implant in humans or use “reasonable care” in designing it.
- 5. In 2014, American Medical Systems agreed to settle approximately 20,000 mesh claims for up to $830 million.
- 6. In early 2014, Bloomberg News reported on how the Danish device maker Coloplast has agreed to pay $16 million to settle about 400 mesh lawsuits.
- 7. On May 28, 2015, Deborah Barba was awarded $100 million by a Delaware State Court to compensate her for permanent injuries sustained from the Boston Scientific Corporation’s mesh product. This ruling came shortly after the company announced it would pay $119 million to resolve approximately 3,000 claims.
What To Do If You Have Been Hurt
The medical device manufacturers companies continue to push these products despite the overwhelming evidence of the harm they do to women. Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers has helped women who have been harmed by transvaginal mesh. We will provide you with experienced representation and make sure your claim is properly handled among the others in the mass tort litigation. Time may be short to make your claim as some of the settlements will close to “new” cases in the near future. Call us at 757.455.0077 or toll free at 866-455-6657 for a free consultation.