Additional Lawsuit Filed Over Avaulta Transvaginal Mesh Injuries
On May 13, 2009, another lawsuit against C.R. Bard, the maker of Avaulta brand vaginal mesh products, was filed in West Virginia federal court. The suit is similar to eight other transvaginal mesh lawsuits filed against Bard in West Virginia this year, claiming that the plaintiff suffered complications after having surgery to implant an Avaulta Anterior and Posterior Biosynthetic Support System to treat her pelvic organ prolapse. The plaintiff says that as a result of the surgery she suffered permanent injury, loss of a bodily organ system, and considerable physical and mental pain and will have to have several additional corrective procedures.
Vaginal Mesh Complications
Vaginal mesh products, like Avaulta Anterior and Posterior Biosynthetic Support Systems, are surgical devices used to treat pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence in women. These conditions are often caused by surgery, pregnancy, or childbirth, and are more common in older women. While the use of vaginal mesh can be an effective method of treating pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence, many patients have experienced serious complications and side effects. Since 2006, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has received over 1,000 reports of problems linked to transvaginal mesh, leading them to issue an advisory about the products in October 2008. Patients have reported pain, infection, erosion of the vaginal lining, and recurrence of the original condition, among other complications. Additional surgeries may be needed to correct the harm, and some damage may be permanent.
Other Legal Action
Bard is not the only vaginal mesh manufacturer facing legal action. Separate from the Bard cases filed in West Virginia, the Mentor Corporation, now owned by Johnson & Johnson, has also been sued in federal court for injuries allegedly caused by its OB Tape sling, a type of transvaginal mesh. On December 8, 2008, the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered that 22 pending federal cases against Mentor be consolidated in district court in Georgia for pre-trial proceedings. Legal action against other transvaginal mesh manufacturers is also in progress.