We recently saw landmark settlement in the realm of transvaginal mesh litigation. Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay a $5.7 million jury award to a woman named Colleen Perry who suffered injuries from the company’s vaginal-mesh implant. Specifically, a California jury awarded Ms. Perry $700,000 in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages for her injuries.
Ms. Perry was implanted with the product in 2011. Her complaint alleges that the Abbrevo vaginal-mesh implant eroded inside of her and was defectively designed, and that Johnson and Johnson’s Ethicon unit failed to properly warn doctors and patients about the implant’s risks. As the device eroded inside her, Ms. Perry experienced immense pain. The case is Perry et al v. Luu et al,
What is the Abbrevo Sling?
The Abbrevo sling was approved and cleared for sale by the FDA in 2010 as Ethicon’s (a subsidiary of Johnson and Johnson) newest model of mesh product designed to treat stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP).
Typical injuries from transvaginal mesh slings include skin infection, organ damage, pain, bladder infections, cutting through the skin, punctures to the bladder, bowel, and uterus.
This verdict is the first to find fault with the Abbrevo sling, and the fourth win for plaintiffs suing over transvaginal mesh injuries.
Johnson and Johnson now faces over 36,000 lawsuits have been filed against Ethicon in state and federal courts over the devices, each accusing the company of improperly designing the vaginal inserts that have led to organ damage and pain. In June 2012, the company voluntarily pulled four kinds of mesh inserts off the market after over 600 lawsuits were filed claiming the mesh was causing internal injuries. However, the company still sells the Abbrevo and other incontinence-sling lines.
There is no sign that Johnson and Johnson’s legal problems will slow down anytime soon. At present, more than 70,000 transvaginal mesh lawsuits against seven companies have been consolidated before Judge Joseph Goodwin in West Virginia. The Johnson and Johnson consolidated cases are In re Ethicon Pelvic Repair System Products Liability Litigation, U.S. District Court, Southern District of West Virginia (Charleston).
Mass Tort vs. Class Actions
A class action is a lawsuit filed on behalf of a group of people who share the same circumstances, damages and injuries, against the same Defendant. Mass tort claims are more complicated than class actions, as they cover a broad range of different claims. The transvaginal mesh lawsuits illustrate the quintessential mass tort, as the injuries alleged range from organ damage, pain, internal injuries, to infections.
Get Legal Help
What happened to Ms. Parry is unfortunately all too common to women who have undergone surgery to treat incontinence. All too often, corporations are negligently misrepresenting their defective products, causing irreparable harm. If you or loved one has suffered injuries or side effects from an Abbrevo sling or transvaginal mesh implant, contact an attorney to discuss your legal options today.