As more women come forward with claims of injuries due to their transvaginal mesh implants, there will be an increase in mass tort cases. Approximately 15 percent of all transvaginal mesh implants come with complications, and more than 100,000 women every year undergoing transvaginal mesh surgery, according to James Esparza law firm.
Numerous trials are already set for 2014, according to the Rottenstein Law Group LLP, with the first trial against Ethicon, a division of Johnson & Johnson, ready to begin on Feb. 10 in federal court in West Virginia. In fact, lawsuits involving six manufacturers will be heard in the U.S. District Court for the District of West Virginia, the law firm noted this year. Many cases are being classified as mass tort to discourage vaginal mesh makers from creating further products, with one mass tort trial against Boston Scientific set for Feb. 11, according to Top Mass Torts. The number of mass tort cases may only rise.
Understanding mass tort
According to Life Care Solutions Group, because of the nature of transvaginal mesh injuries and complications, many cases are being categorized as mass tort lawsuits to “deter manufacturers from engaging in further negligence or wrongdoing if they are found to have caused widespread harm or put consumers at risk with the production and distribution of substandard medical products.” While numerous similar cases can be heard together against a single manufacturer, Life Care noted plaintiffs in mass tort cases are compensated according to their individual injuries. For transvaginal mesh, mass tort cases allow the injured entities to share the cost of suing a large company, according to Life Care, and can help protect women in the future from the complications of the devices by holding manufacturers accountable.
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To help women who have suffered or are suffering from transvaginal mesh injuries receive compensation through mass tort cases, funding is becoming available, according to Legal-Bay LLC, a plaintiff advocate firm. Legal-Bay notes mass tort cases are on the rise, yet the costs of legal action can be high for women who have already undergone numerous surgeries to repair damage from their devices. Many times, cases can cost tens of thousands of dollars, depending on settlements.
Women across the country continue to experience adverse side effects from their transvaginal mesh implants, and more may see their cases become mass tort.
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.