Under normal circumstances, a hysterectomy – the surgical removal of a woman's uterus – is a fairly routine procedure. Though it is major surgery that entails a certain amount of risk and requires a convalescent period of up to five days, complications are relatively rare.
Hip implants from Smith and Nephew are causing destruction of tissue and bone, which makes Levin Papantonio attorney Ben Gordon want to hear the company say, “Uncle.” The metal-on-metal implants are among a series of bad products put out by Smith and Nephew. Ben Gordon will see the implant company in court in the manufacturer’s home base of Memphis, Tennessee where a settlement has yet to be reached.
“[Smith and Nephew] is denying everything. They are claiming that their product is still the best on the market,” says Gordon.
According to legend, the half-mad Emperor Nero played his fiddle while the Eternal City was being consumed by flames. This story has little basis in historical fact (first, Nero actually did take some action to contain the fires raging in the city, and secondly, the fiddle wasn't invented until some 10 centuries later), but it serves as an apt metaphor for modern America – particularly when it comes to medical products that are causing injury and death and a corrupt government so beholden to corporate interests that it fails to regulate in any meaningful way.
For patients who have received a hip replacement, the outcome expected may be to move easier and without pain. For the recipients of a Stryker ABG II or Rejuvenate hip implant, however, the new outcome may be a settlement of $300,000. The Stryker implants were documented to cause corrosion, illness, pain and swelling, and even metal debris found in victims’ blood. They were recalled in 2012.
As of the end of October, there have been in excess of 50,000 vaginal mesh lawsuits filed against manufacturers of these devices – yet a recent study published in the British Medical Journal suggests that this treatment for stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP) is generally regarded as safe. Earlier this year, at a meeting of the American Urological Association, it was announced that the connection between the mesh and the painful symptoms suffered by these women was “unclear.” Nonetheless, the number of revision surgeries to remove the mesh is increasing.
So far, American Medical Systems (Endo) has gone forward in settling lawsuits while the 3 of the 4 remaining “big 4” manufacturers continue to fight. According to media sources and members of the legal community, litigation over these meshes could become as widespread as that over asbestos.
One complication to the resolution of these suits is that many of these meshes have NOT been restricted and/or received heightened scrutiny by the FDA and many remain on the market and are still being surgically implanted to this date. Many new lawsuits pop up on a daily basis.
On November 3, 2014, Stryker Corporation reached a global settlement in the Stryker Recall Litigation with the lead plaintiffs' attorneys representing thousands of individuals required to get additional hip replacements or corrections because a faulty medical devices produced by Stryker. The settlement, announced yesterday in U.S. District Court in St. Paul, Minnesota, could result in more than $1.4 billion in payouts.
Levin Papantonio is proud to have once again sponsored and hosted the People’s Law School, an adult education course offered in conjunction with Pensacola State College and designed to provide the Pensacola community knowledge in legal matters that impact their daily lives.
The risks associated with power morcellation surgery have been firmly established, and lawsuits from plaintiffs who have seen sarcomas spreading as the result of a relatively simple procedure are being filed. Johnson & Johnson, already dealing with massive litigation over other products, has ceased all manufacture and sales of morcellators, issuing a voluntary recall of the devices from hospitals this past July. Why then, are doctors still doing morcellation surgeries?
What happens when a simple, laparoscopic procedure for hysterectomy or to remove a benign fibroid mass instead seeds potentially fatal consequences? Levin, Papantonio Attorney Brandon Bogle answers questions about power morcellation, the FDA’s recent warnings on device usage, and the concerns women face moving forward.