As more women look forward to having their transvaginal mesh lawsuit cases heard in 2014, this past year was busy with multidistrict litigation against vaginal mesh manufacturers. One case resulted in a South Dakota woman receiving more than $3 million in early 2013 for Ethicon’s failure to provide adequate warnings about its vaginal mesh products. Thousands of women have entered into lawsuits against Ethicon and other vaginal mesh manufacturers, such as C.R. Bard and Boston Scientific. With transvaginal mesh cases already set for 2014, taking a look back at litigation in 2013 shows more woman are getting justice for their injuries.
Related: 5 Helpful Questions to Ask Your Injury Lawyer
Vaginal Mesh Manufacturers Settle Lawsuits in 2013
According to Fox News, Ethicon settled with a South Dakota woman in February for the complications she suffered from transvaginal mesh. This mesh lawsuit case was the first of approximately 1,800 cases against Ethicon pending in New Jersey. A jury of six women and three men ruled in favor of the woman’s claims that Ethicon should have provided warnings about possible complications from its transvaginal mesh devices. Linda Gross, the plaintiff and a registered nurse, claimed she had to undergo 18 surgeries to fix issues from the mesh.
“While we are always concerned when a patient experiences medical conditions like those suffered by the plaintiff, all surgeries for pelvic organ prolapse present risks of complications,” Sheri Woodruff, a spokeswoman for Ethicon, said regarding the case, Fox News reported.
The $3.35 million ruling against Ethicon was just one among many lawsuits in 2013. Approximately 11,000 additional claims against six vaginal mesh makers were consolidated into five federal court cases this year, Fox News reported back in February. Bloomberg reported in September that five manufacturers of transvaginal mesh products were in talks to settle thousands of lawsuits. In fact, Bloomberg reported the suits were expanding, with the potential of reaching more than 50,000 claimants.
By June alone, Johnson & Johnson had 12,250 mesh claims, Bloomberg reported.
C.R. Bard faced more than 12,000 cases in 2013, but only accounted for 5,500 of the approximately 40,000 suits in federal court. Endo’s American Medical Systems Inc. had 13,500 cases between its state and federal cases. Other defendants in 2013 included Boston Scientific with more than 12,000 suits and Coloplast A/S and Cook Medical Inc. facing a combined 1,000 claims, officials told Bloomberg.
“Settlements are one way for plaintiffs to receive compensation for harms they have suffered from their vaginal mesh implants,” said Rochelle Rottenstein, principal of the Rottenstein Law Group LLP. “Some plaintiffs, though, have chosen a trial and received large damages awards.”
Lori Polemenakos is Director of Consumer Content and SEO strategist for LeadingResponse, a legal marketing company. An award-winning journalist, writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas, she's produced articles for major brands such as Match.com, Yahoo!, MSN, AOL, Xfinity, Mail.com, and edited several published books. Since 2016, she's published hundreds of articles about Social Security disability, workers' compensation, veterans' benefits, personal injury, mass tort, auto accident claims, bankruptcy, employment law and other related legal issues.