Mirena IUD Gaining Popularity, Despite Potential for Mirena Side Effects and Mounting Lawsuits
A new report from USA Today indicates that the Mirena IUD is becoming more and more popular among young women seeking a reliable and convenient form of birth control. Unfortunately, the same report made little mention of the potential for serious Mirena side effects, or the increasing number of Mirena IUD lawsuits that have been filed in recent months by women who claim they sustained serious injuries as a result of the device.
According to USA Today, a decade ago, long-acting birth control methods like the Mirena IUD were only used by 2.4% of U.S. women who used contraceptives, but by 2009, they had caught on with 8.5%. What’s more, the Mirena IUD and similar long-acting contraceptives are expected to become even more popular, now that federal law requires insurers to cover all contraceptive methods, eliminating the high upfront costs associated with methods like Mirena.
Proponents of the Mirena IUD tout it as a convenient way to effectively prevent pregnancy. But according to a number of Mirena IUD lawsuits pending in New Jersey Superior Court, Mirena has allegedly caused a number of serious injuries, including uterine perforations, bleeding, inflammation, and infection. They further allege that Bayer, the maker of the device, concealed its serious risks and failed to provide users with adequate warnings about Mirena side effects.
Many Mirena complications, including uterine perforations and ectopic pregnancy can permanently harm a woman’s fertility, and even endanger her life. Unfortunately, Bayer has been accused in the past of downplaying the potential for life-changing Mirena injuries. In December 2009, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) sent Bayer a letter warning that its Mirena marketing “overstates the efficacy of Mirena, presents unsubstantiated claims, minimizes the risks of using Mirena, and includes false or misleading presentations regarding Mirena.” Among other things, the FDA took issue with Bayer’s claims that using Mirena would help a woman “look and feel great.” In fact, the FDA pointed out that many women who use Mirena experience loss of libido, irregular bleeding, ovarian cysts, pack pain, weight gain, breast pain and tenderness, and severe bouts of acne. Sounds attractive, right?
Bayer recommends Mirena for women who have had at least one child. But according to the USA Today report, some in the medical community see the Mirena IUD as an ideal contraceptive for women in their late teens or early 20s who are sexually active, but don’t want children for many years. It’s a bit puzzling, to be honest.
It’s too early to tell how large the litigation for Mirena IUD lawsuits is likely to grow. But according to court records, Bayer may be anticipating a large number of claims. In August, the company’s attorneys petitioned the New Jersey Supreme Court for the consolidation of all Mirena IUD lawsuits filed in the state in a single proceeding in Middlesex County.