Hernia mesh products have been linked to a wide range of debilitating side effects:
- acute and chronic pain
- life-threatening infections
- internal bleeding
- seroma (fluid build-up)
- hernia recurrence
Many patients say they were forced to undergo invasive revision surgeries after experiencing side effects. In many cases, these procedures only reveal more evidence of mesh complications, even total device failures. Adhesion is a commonly-reported side effect, as a patient’s hernia mesh becomes dangerously attached to surrounding internal organs. Some patients even report fistula, in which the mesh bores away at organs, creating abnormal passageways through body tissue.
Hundreds of patients have already filed lawsuits, accusing companies like Johnson & Johnson and Atrium of selling hernia mesh patches with significant problems in design and manufacturing.
Ethicon Removes Physiomesh From Global Market
In May of 2016, Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon issued a global product withdrawal for one of the company’s most popular mesh products:
- Physiomesh Flexible Composite Mesh
In a notice sent out to surgical teams world-wide, Ethicon told physicians and hospital administrators that the company’s Flexible Composite Mesh line of hernia products had been linked to an increased rate of two severe complications:
- hernia recurrence
As Ethicon reports, the manufacturer’s decision, which has not been labeled a “recall” in the United States, was based on unpublished analyses of data from major hernia repair registries in Germany and Denmark. These studies, performed at the behest of Ethicon, found that patients with the Flexible Composite Mesh experienced hernia recurrence – and required invasive revision procedures – more frequently than patients in whom other mesh products had been used. Ethicon asked healthcare practitioners to “quarantine” their mesh products and send them back to Ethicon immediately.
Where patients who have already received the mesh are concerned, Ethicon has provided few instructions. In fact, the company has been unable to provide surgeons with additional direction, because it cannot fully explain the product’s problem. Ethicon believes that the elevated rates of recurrence and reoperation may come down to a combination of factors, noting “product characteristics” as one possibility. In a series of recent product liability lawsuits, Physiomesh patients have taken up this thread, claiming the mesh is wholly defective in design.
Physiomesh Lawsuits Consolidated In Georgia
As of September 12, 2017, more than 80 Physiomesh lawsuits have been consolidated in the US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, a step that may ultimately lead to hernia mesh settlements. In Atlanta, the cases will move through pre-trial proceedings (like discovery, in which evidence is gathered) as a group. While transfer is not automatic, most similar claims filed in the future are likely to be transferred to the Georgia federal court and included in this developing Multi-District Litigation.
Atrium Faces 100+ Lawsuits Over C-Qur Mesh
Ethicon isn’t the only company to come under fire over alleged defects in hernia mesh. New Hampshire medical device manufacturer Atrium has been hit with nearly 150 lawsuits from patients who received one of the company’s C-Qur mesh products and suffered severe complications.
In fact, the litigation has grown so large that the federal court system, as in the case of Physiomesh, has decided to consolidate the cases, sending them to a single federal court in New Hampshire. In the State’s capital of Concord, current and future C-Qur lawsuits will pass through crucial pre-trial proceedings together as members of a Multi-District Litigation.
As in Physiomesh lawsuits, C-Qur patients claim that Atrium’s use of polypropylene, a common industrial plastic, was negligent, noting substantial medical research that has found the synthetic material can produce severe immune system responses. Moreover, plaintiffs say that the company’s choice to coat C-Qur mesh products in fish oil suggests a callous disregard for patient safety, since fish products are known allergens for many members of the general population.
Contact A Hernia Mesh Attorney Today
Were you or a loved one hurt by a hernia mesh product?
Our experienced product liability attorneys can help. Call today to learn more about your legal options in a free consultation. The lawyers at TheProductLawyers.com have decades of experience holding medical device manufacturers accountable. We offer our legal services on a contingency-fee basis, so our clients pay nothing until we secure compensation.
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