$100 Million Mesh Verdict Against Boston Scientific

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by Marilyn T. McGoldrick, Esq.

A  Delaware jury awarded $100 million dollars to a woman who suffered vaginal scarring and constant pain after receiving transvaginal mesh implants made by Boston Scientific. The Delaware state court jury awarded $25 million in compensatory damages and $75 million in punitive damages to Deborah Barba, age 51. Mrs. Barba was implanted with Boston Scientific’s Advantage Fit and Pinnacle transvaginal mesh (TVM) products in 2009 to treat to treat pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI). Thousands of women have been implanted with similar mesh products to treat POP and SUI over the last decade.  Thornton Law Firm represents women across the United States in lawsuits against various pelvic mesh manufacturers for the serious injuries those implants have caused.

The jury found that the mesh implants were defectively designed and manufactured, and that Marlborough, Massachusetts-based Boston Scientific failed to warn doctors and patients of the risks. Mrs. Barba suffered vaginal scarring, mesh erosion and constant, unremitting pain that left her unable to have sexual intercourse. Despite two subsequent surgeries, doctors have not been able to remove all the embedded, pain-causing mesh. After the verdict was announced, she spoke out for other women suffering from defective transvaginal mesh: “I am thankful for the jury’s verdict and hope my story can help other women who are suffering from mesh complications to receive the resolution they deserve. While difficult to share, I hope my case demonstrates to all mesh manufacturers the dangers of their products and the justice they owe victims.”

This is the largest verdict against any manufacturer in the mesh litigation. The largest verdict before this was $73.5 million awarded last year to a Texas woman against Boston Scientific over her Obtryx mesh sling. More than 70,000 mesh cases are pending in federal court in West Virginia, and more are pending in state courts in California, Delaware, Missouri, New Jersey, and Texas.

Thornton Law Firm’s transvaginal mesh attorneys represent women in claims against all the manufacturers of transvaginal mesh:  Boston Scientific Corp., Caldera, C.R. Bard, Inc., Ethicon (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson) and Sofradim/Covidien. If you have a transvaginal mesh implant and have suffered complications including mesh erosion, mesh contraction, pain, additional surgery, infection, bleeding, urinary problems, vaginal tightening or shortening, painful sexual intercourse, inability to engage in sexual intercourse, or organ perforation, for a free, confidential evaluation of your legal claim, please tell us your story here or call our toll free number 888-341-1405. Like all legal claims, defective mesh claims are subject to short, strictly enforced time limits. Do not delay seeking legal advice.

Four Reasons To Be Optimistic About Transvaginal Mesh Litigation

By Marilyn  T. McGoldrick, Esq.

Published on Aug 22, 2014

justice2Boston Scientific won a defense verdict in the first transvaginal mesh (TVM) case to go to trial in Middlesex Superior Court. The jury ruled that plaintiff Diane Albright had not proved that her Pinnacle vaginal mesh device was defectively designed, or that it lacked adequate warnings. While Boston Scientific won this round, we believe that there are four reasons to believe that TVM cases going forward will be won by the plaintiffs.

1. This plaintiff never had her mesh implant removed.

She hadn’t undergone revision surgery – the device was not removed from her body despite the pain it had caused her since implantation in 2010. One of the plaintiff’s attorneys, Jonathon D. Orent, commented “Ms. Albright’s doctors ultimately concluded that it would be more dangerous for her to have surgery to try and remove the mesh. I think the jury had difficulty in identifying with her injuries because of her doctors’ decision not to pursue aggressive surgery.”

2. This case was tried using Ohio law.

Because Ms. Albright lived in Ohio and had the Pinnacle mesh device surgically implanted in the state of Ohio, Ohio law controlled the result. The Ohio Product Liability Act, passed in 2005, requires a different, more difficult burden of proof than would be required under common law, and limits the theories under which a plaintiff can pursue a claim against a product manufacturer.

3. This plaintiff didn’t argue polyproplyene isn’t fit for human implantation

The plaintiff’s attorneys argued that the Pinnacle transvaginal mesh device was defective because it contained too much polypropylene, not that the polypropylene shouldn’t have been used at all. The plaintiffs’ lawyer’s decision to argue the case this way was likely because the plaintiff could not have the device removed.  Despite the fact that the decision not to remove the device was based on the advice of her doctors, jurors may have concluded that if it shouldn’t have been used at all, wouldn’t she have had it removed?

4. This was a case the defense picked.

Finally, this case was selected as a bellwether trial by Boston Scientific precisely because they believed it was a weak case that they could win. Other bellwether trials of cases selected by plaintiffs’ counsel will likely lead to very different outcomes.

Thornton Law Firm’s Drug and Medical Device lawyers represent women in transvaginal mesh claims against Boston Scientific Corp., as well as Caldera, C.R. Bard, Inc., Ethicon (subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson) and Sofradim/Covidien. If you have a transvaginal mesh implant and have suffered complications including pain, mesh erosion, mesh contraction, additional surgeries, urinary problems, severe pelvic pain, infection, bleeding, vaginal tightening or shortening, painful sexual intercourse, inability to engage in sexual intercourse, or organ perforation, and would like a free, confidential evaluation of your legal claim, please tell us your story here or call us at our toll free number 888-341-1405.

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