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Ethicon Transvaginal Mesh Litigation Continues

In one recent case from the U.S. Supreme Court for the Fourth Circuit, a plaintiff, along with her husband, filed a lawsuit against Eithicon, the makers of a of popular transvaginal mesh medical device that has been the subject of numerous products liability lawsuits.

sadIn this case, plaintiff testified that after having the Ethicon (Johnson & Johnson) device implanted, she started to experience serious complications that resulted in significant pain and suffering.  In this case, the device was known as a Tension-Free Vaginal Tape-Obdurator. This device is typically referred to by its abbreviated name, TVT-O.  
As our Boston transvaginal mesh injury attorneys can explain, the defective medical devices were marketed to women who suffered from various uncomfortable medical issues involving the female reproductive organs.  Essentially, women who suffer from a medical condition known as pelvic organ prolapse (POP), or stress urinary inconstancy (SUI) could have a medical grade mesh implanted that was supposed to alleviate these conditions and the related discomfort.

These conditions that transvaginal mesh implants were supposed to treat are very common in women who have had children, are postmenopausal, or have had a hysterectomy.  However, there were various problems with these transvaginal mesh devices, as many of them were defectively designed. Some of these problems involved a weakening of the pelvic muscles and erosion of the pelvic floor.  In some cases, the pelvic organs would fall into the bladder or rectum. This is action the same medical condition that the implant was supposed to treat (POP).

In this case, plaintiff had her TVT-O device implanted in late February 2011.  In her first post-operative office visit, her doctor observed that some mesh erosion had already occurred. This soon led to extreme pain in her pelvis and the surrounding area.  Her surgeon tried to fix the problem without having to perform another vaginal surgery, but that did not work, and, in late June of the same year, she had a second surgery to cover the exposed portion of mesh.  This also did not prove successful, and she was referred to a urogynecologist.

This doctor performed a surgery to remove the mesh but discovered that implant had caused an infection.  The mesh was entirely eroded and had essentially fused with her pelvic bone, so it could not be properly removed. She was left with severe scarring and could not engage in sexual activity without extreme pain.

The jury found for the plaintiff on the basis of them designing a defective medical device and failing to warn the plaintiff of a known danger.  This is a typical cause of action in Boston transvaginal mesh litigation.  After the jury found for the plaintiffs, the defendant moved for a judgment as a matter or law (JMOL).  A JMOL at the end of trial is asking the judge to reverse the jury’s finding on grounds that the verdict was not proper.

The court of appeals found that the district court did not commit any error in the application of law and affirmed the jury verdict in favor of the plaintiff in this defective products lawsuit.

Victims of Massachusetts product liability may call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.

Additional Resources:
Huskey v. Eithicon, January 26, 2017, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

More Blog Entries:
A Dozen Hospitals Allegedly Failed to Disclose Medical Device Related Injuries and Deaths, Nov. 28, 2016, Boston Physiomesh Injury Lawyer Blog