Power morcellators are surgical tools that were widely used in gynecological surgeries until recently. But these devices have been found to quickly escalate disease in women with unsuspected uterine cancer.
Tragically, many women report undergoing a “safe” morcellator-aided operation, exhibiting no cancer symptoms, and then receiving a terrifying advanced cancer diagnosis just weeks after the surgery.
Many of those harmed are taking legal action against morcellator manufacturers. 22 claims have been filed so far, one of which has already been resolved in a settlement. With so many exposed to the risks of power morcellators over the years, more patients are expected to come forward.
Choosing the Right Attorneys for Morcellator Lawsuits
Most lawsuits involving power morcellators are filed against device manufacturers, large corporations that often have nearly unlimited resources to spend on legal defense. Even with a solid case, litigation against these formidable companies can prove extremely difficult.
Not every lawyer will be prepared for the challenges posed by power morcellator litigation. Finding attorneys who possess the experience, knowledge, and resources needed in such lawsuits is an essential step in seeking justice against manufacturing giants.
Banville Law Can Help
With extensive experience fighting against big companies, our team of accomplished attorneys would be especially suited to help you form your morcellator case.
Our firm is headed by Laurence Banville, Esq., who has worked on corporate defense for corporations faced with consumer asbestos exposure lawsuits. His familiarity with corporate defense strategies offers important advantages for patients filing morcellator lawsuits.
The idea of filing a lawsuit against a powerful corporation may sound intimidating, especially if you are experiencing suffering and loss. Let our dedicated attorneys guide you through the process. We have the deepest sympathy for you in your plight and want you to feel completely confident in our support. We will fight tirelessly to win the justice and compensation that you deserve for the hardship you’ve been subjected to.
Legal FAQ for Morcellator Litigation
At Banville Law, we strive to make sure that clients feel thoroughly informed on everything necessary to their cases. Here, we provide a list of frequently-asked questions on topics relevant to morcellator lawsuits.
Were Power Morcellators Recalled?
The FDA started investigating power morcellators in 2014 in order to consider a recall/ban of the devices. After analyzing available research, the agency issued urgent warnings about morcellators but has decided against a recall for the time being.
However, morcellator critics continue to put pressure on the FDA for a complete ban, demanding that the devices be further investigated and monitored, and an FDA recall could very well happen in the future.
Though the FDA has not yet required it, some leading healthcare establishments have chosen to completely stop morcellator use. Johnson & Johnson, which was the leading manufacturer of power morcellators, recalled its morcellator products in July 2014. Many hospitals have banned or put severe restrictions on the use of the devices.
How Were Morcellators Approved for Surgery?
Power morcellators were approved for release and for use in gynecological surgery via a controversial FDA process called 501(k) Clearance, which bases eligibility on how similar the given device is to a previously-approved “predicate device.”
If manufacturers can demonstrate “equivalence” to an earlier device considered safe, 501(k) allows them to bypass rigorous safety tests and clinical trials for a quicker market release. Many are outraged at the possible dangers that 501(k) poses to patient safety.
Can They Increase Cancer Risk?
No. So far, research has not shown power morcellators to increase the chances that a cancer-free patient will develop cancer.
The devices do not cause cancer to develop; rather, they can worsen disease in patients who already have cancer but are unaware of it. Power morcellators have rotating blades and can “seed” new malignant tumors by flinging bits of cancerous tissue onto surrounding organs.
This design feature is the main reason that morcellators pose cancer-spreading risks. However, the risks are compounded by other common circumstances of morcellator-aided surgeries. For example, typical morcellation patients possess multiple uterine cancer risk factors, and uterine sarcoma, type of cancer that morcellators have been found to spread, is very hard to detect.
Why Are Patients Filing Lawsuits Against Manufacturers?
Many patients feel wronged by device manufacturers, saying that their considerable injuries, pain, and loss could have been prevented if appropriate action had been taken to ensure patient safety.
They allege that decades of research studies demonstrating the cancer-spreading risks were readily available and yet morcellator manufacturers ignored the evidence, still choosing to design, manufacture, and distribute a potentially dangerous product.
Furthermore, manufacturers are being implicated in advertising their morcellator models as “safe” to doctors, hospitals, and patients, as many report being ill-informed of the risks.
Have Lawsuits Been Filed as Class Action?
No. Class action is a form of group litigation, and so far, all power morcellator suits have been filed as individual cases.
Also, our attorneys believe that at this point, power morcellator cases are better suited to consolidation under Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) rather than class action.
This is because although power morcellator cases often share common major characteristics, they are still varied enough that it would be difficult for one selected case to represent them all, which is what happens in class action.
In MDL, constituent cases remain separate lawsuits. MDL also generally yields a higher chance for individual plaintiffs to receive significant compensation than class action does.
For a more in-depth look at class action and MDL, visit our page on morcellator litigation.
When Is the Best Time to File a Case?
As soon as possible, to prevent losing the right to file a claim. Each state imposes a “statute of limitations,” which is a time limit on how long after a given event legal action can be pursued.
How Much Does it Cost to Hire Banville Law?
Though cost may seem a pressing concern in filing a lawsuit, you can start exploring your legal options for free at Banville Law. Our lawyers will work with you if you have a viable case, and you won’t have to pay anything unless we win a court award or settlement for you.