J&J Hit With $12.5 Million Verdict In Trasvaginal Mesh Case
A Philadelphia jury rendered a staggering $12.5 million verdict against Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary Ethicon in the first transvaginal mesh claim tried in Philadelphia. Yesterday, the jury awarded plaintiff, Patricia Hammons, $5.5 million in compensatory damages and today it awarded another $7 million in punitive damages based on the defective vaginal mesh device, the Gynecare Prolift. After a two-week trial and one day of jury deliberations, the jury found that Ethicon failed to properly warn consumers and physicians of the device’s risks.
The FDA approved the Gynecare Prolift device in 2005. Patricia Hammons was implanted with the device in 2009 to repair a prolapsed bladder. After the device failed, Ms. Hammon was forced to undergo numerous surgeries to correct the problems, but will never be able to completely remove mesh particles that adhered to her bladder. The jury, which consisted of seven women and five men, heard testimony that the density of the mesh created scar tissue to build up, which led to erosion of Ms. Hammons’ bladder and “excruciating” pain during intercourse. After the jury determined that punitive damages were warranted in the case, the trial moved directly into the punitive damages phase.
Plaintiffs strongly argued that J&J had been told that the device had problems both before and after it went on the market, but the company continued to sell the device to unsuspecting females for another seven years. It was argued the company was well aware the mesh was causing pain during intercourse in about 20 percent of the women using the device. However, despite this knowledge, the company continued to sell as many of the devices that it could. Plaintiff implored the jury to send a message to J&J and Ethicon that their conduct was wrong.
Attorneys from Ethicon argued that top company officials had “heard the message” immediately after the compensatory verdict was rendered and that punitive damages were unnecessary. Ethicon argued that corrective action had already been taken as it removed the Gynecare Prolift from the market in 2012 when learning of the risks of the product. The jury evidently disagreed and awarded the plaintiff $7 million in punitive damages.
There are still tens of thousands cases pending around the country involving women injured by defective vaginal mesh devices. Nearly 70,000 of these claims are pending in the Southern District of West Virginia where they are awaiting trial dates or settlement agreements to be consummated. If you or a loved one has been injured by a transvaginal mesh device, contact the attorneys at Ennis & Ennis, P.A. for a free confidential consultation by calling or visit us online at www.Ennislaw.com and fill out an online form.
Vaginal Mesh Lawsuit
If you or a loved one have suffered or been injured by an transvaginal mesh implant you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the transvaginal mesh lawsuit attorneys of Ennis & Ennis today for a free confidential case evaluation. Our lawyers are standing by to answer any questions you may have regarding your transvaginal mesh injury or a possible vaginal mesh class action lawsuit. Call us or fill out the free case evaluation form on this page.