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Hello March ~ A Year of Settlements and Immunity

Art courtesy of Jade R.

Art courtesy of Jade R.

Hello March ~

At this writing, we have just heard the result of two pelvic mesh defective product trials – The Coleen Perry case resulted in a defective product conclusion by the jurors, defective instructions to the end user (doctor), $5 million in punitive damages and $700,000 in compensatory.  The jury took nearly four days to come to that conclusion.  Then just yesterday, a settlement was offered by Ethicon in the Dianne Bellew case, the specifics of which are not disclosed.

Both of these actions name Ethicon, a division of Johnson & Johnson. Settling a case not only avoids a “defective” designation but it also allows the company to skirt any liability. Settling the higher cost cases (presuming a settlement is in the seven-figure range) also lowers the “average” pelvic mesh case value, perhaps laying the groundwork on what is ahead in the near future – settlements to put behind the company this dark chapter of defective medical devices.

One advantage of a settlement is that the woman receives her jury award sooner. By comparison, Linda Gross who won a case against Ethicon over the Prolift prolapse mesh in February 2013, is still waiting for an appeal by Ethicon to wind through the courts.

With the exception of a few cases won by Boston Scientific, plaintiffs are finally having their day in court and the wins are almost exclusively on the side of the plaintiff. Just how many more losses can defendant mesh manufacturers take without finally agreeing to settlements?  It will happen, and probably soon but again, it will never be enough to not only restore health but to send a message to the companies  to discourage their reckless rush to profits at any cost.

Mesh News Desk (MND or MMDND) has been covering the issues surrounding pelvic and hernia mesh for nearly four years now. If you are new to the issues surrounding the controversy, please visit the search bar or click on the topics. You will find a world of coverage. You may want to start with Resources and our Facebook page.

There are now more than 72,000 lawsuits filed in Charleston, West Virginia, consolidated in multidistrict litigation (MDL). These are transvaginally placed pelvic mesh affecting women, not hernia mesh, though it is the same mesh and often the adverse events are similar. Both meshes are made from polypropylene, a petroleum-based product that is not inert and continues to change in the body. Many doctors feel that there is no time line on when a complication can occur. Mesh has been called a ticking time bomb for that reason. Mesh placement has been called “experimental” because it never went through any clinical trials to assure safety. That was not required by the Food and Drug Administration.

The longer these manufacturers wait, the more evidence is coming forward about the dangers of polypropylene mesh.  Right now, the autoimmune issues, so common in many after their implants, are being explored. That will add another injury to the plaintiff’s long list and will not spell well for the mesh makers.

Even as U.S. manufacturers take some of their most troubling pelvic meshes off the market, they export them. Mesh News Desk is hearing from women in Ireland, Scotland, Israel, So. Africa, among other places, who are the recipients of these U.S. rejects.

Many wonder why that is not criminal negligence.

If you are new to the mesh issue, or suspect those symptoms you’ve been having for some time may have started after your implant, you are not alone.  Besides pelvic pain from mesh shrinkage and scar formation, many women feel a burning and pulling sensation, experience ongoing infections, develop rashes, dental problems, joint aches, even fibromyalgia and lupus.

If you suspect your implant may be negatively affecting your life, it’s important to go to a mesh expert. The established medical community does not offer them on every corner. You must seek them out.  Look up our doctor directory and please avoid the doctors who have been involved in implanting mesh that has gone wrong. Most experts now believe that partial removals may leave the patient in worse shape, so it’s important to have as few removal surgeries as possible to get as much as is humanly possible, if removal is warranted at all.

Advertisers – Advertisers are beginning to understand, Mesh News Desk has been around going on four years now and 5,000 viewers a day is not uncommon.   Want to have your words seen on MND, in an ad or an essay? Contact janeakre@meshnewsdesk.com.  Mesh News Desk is grateful to our advertisers.  With 5,000 views a day- what are you waiting for? 

Please visit the About Us page to learn more.

MND is NOT a legal referral service!

Thanks to Courtroom View Network  for access to trial video feeds. I encourage mesh injured and their families to attend one of these trials in person if you can. Even for one day. It is amazing how much information must be carefully explained to a jury. One comes to appreciate the U.S. jury trials.  If you ever are a juror, consider it an honor to listen to the evidence in a case and be asked to issue an opinion.

GoFundMe – Your donations are appreciated to allow court coverage, even in the form of mileage for hotels and air.  Also much appreciated are your thoughts shared with the website.  For those wanting to donate – there is a GoFundMe page to contribute to journalism in the public interest. Indy journalism is a challenging road, to say the least, but the need is there, and I believe the support is as well.  (Please if you are mesh injured and suffering financially as well, you do not need to contribute).

Bruiser –PS Bruiser, your editorial assistant, who was born with a compromised liver, is doing well. He is stable with meds. In May he will be 5 years old. It’s amazing how the body can compromise when it needs to!

Your emails are never shared unless you request. Providing your email may result in enrollment in the newsletter.  Thank you all!  Hang in there friends.  A new year, renewed determination!

Jane Akre, Editor

janeakre@meshnewsdesk.com 

 

 

71 Comments

  1. hello ..well the last few weeks of my mesh implant pain has soared through the roof,,,ive had what i call a double barrel shotgun effect now,,both sides of the implant area are now competing to see which one will xause me to lose control,,,family doesnt understand without self medicating..im down for the count..i cant afford the price of pain killers without a prescription…up to 80 mills of oxy a day to get up and. maneuver..i look at what it would cost if i had some pain management with a legal prescription…what a difference…i slept 20 hours straight..till the paycheck showed up in my account..bad news is ive fallen behind so much in life financially it effects everyones life..its not fair ..but feel i have no choice…i now feel the

    burning the ripples of scar tissue that just get bigger harder tighter..the nausea issue..has got worse..i did get my records..i was implanted with physiomesh 4×6. Johnson and Johnson co.im like a little kid continually looking at my email all day to see if this lawyer out of Texas has committed yet..i just want to have some kind of life…prescribed pain meds…where itd cost me for 2 weeks what i pay for a day…i pray to God for us all..i told this attorney what i think would be a reasonable settlement 200,00___800,000__ but how do your put a price on pain..or loss…????anyone have an idea? dont want to feel greedy ither..im 46 years old…i weigh 205 im 6’0 tall my pre op paper says im morbid obesity…REALLY?? i feel insulted should i..?? ive sold all my hot rods ive built..all my tools..took a pay cut of 20,000__35,000 a year…feeling hopeless…down…i hate mesh.,.

    • Jane Akre says:

      Jerry- Please give Bruce Rosenberg a call 954=701-5094. He is mesh injured and may be able to offer some direction because he’s been there.

    • kitty says:

      You are not morbidly obese at 6″ 205# man

      Listen to

      JANE

      • Jane Akre says:

        K- My friend is 160 lb and full of muscle. She is an athlete. According to BMI she is obese. She definitely is not! BMI (body mass index) does not distinguish between fat and muscle,,,It is an inexact measurement in that regard, just FYI.

  2. Ana says:

    In the past after my two implants I kept going to my GYN in the same hospital as the doctor that did my second implant, With all of my issues she never once wanted to tell me it could be mesh related. I decided to see a urogenocologist that had no interaction with this hospital, and to my surprise the first thing he told me when, he read my surgecal reports was that he new the first doctor that did my first implant. He did tell me that I needed a cystoscopy, and that I have a complicated history. He could not understand why the report of my second surgery consultation said that I would be getting a revision, instead they implanted a second one without removal of the first. He told me that it felt like I have a vaginal bulge, I have a lot of issues with my bladder, most of my problems including necessary hip injections, all after perforating the left side of my bladder. I now have to go back to him, for a eurodinamic test, and a cystoscopy, but whats scares me the most is that he mention the possibility of a mesh implant. He, also gave me paperwork with options to treat my problem, and one of them was the MESH. He is one of the few doctors that accepts my insurance. What should I do?

  3. Diane Elliott says:

    Jane, Do you have a list of mesh trials coming up? I am most interested in California. But others may be interested in the rest. Thank you.

    • Jane Akre says:

      Always checking…. I will post a calendar when I know… thank you.

    • Bejah says:

      Did Johnson and Johnson/Ethicon just make some sort of announcemet about settlements in the past few days? I heard a rumor that they did but wanted to check with our members. It was on the heels of the verdict in favor of a recent CA trial where the plaintiff was awarded $5.7Million (Of course in CA the state takes 50%!!!. Did we vote on this or did they slip it in at 2am on a Saturday!). Looking for some encouraging words…

      Happy spring to all…I plante4d seeds, bulbs and 1 gallon perennials in the garden and it made me feel better…the pain in my heart, not the pain in my body.

      Bejah

      • Advocate says:

        Hi Bejah,

        I wanted to get an answer to you, in case you didn’t already have the information regarding a supposed JJ settlement. The supposed source or announcement of a settlement, was a press release in a CNBC online source by Legal-Bay Lawsuit Settlement. The link was provided and again wrongly promoted, in the Open Letter to Judge Goodwin by a poster who didn’t realize the link was nothing other than an advertisement, done as a press release, for the services of this company. Here’s the link for your review … http://www.cnbc.com/id/102529509.

        I hate that these companies put this information out there, as if they know something that is news breaking, or even helpful. If they want to advertise their services, they should do so in a way that does not confuse the masses. When people are injured, such as all of you, the desire to find anything uplifting will elicit these notices. This is shameful but not illegal. Please, please, all of you injured by mesh…read things carefully. Think of the commercial that says if it was on the internet it must be true! (Specifically, I’m thinking of the girl who thinks the guy is a French model because that’s what he posted.)

        I can only imagine the number of phone calls to attorney offices, by JJ mesh implanted clients, wanting to know about this so called settlement.

        I would rather be posting something about a real settlement for all of you, but dispelling the misleading information is all I can do for now.

        Wishing all of you peace,

        Advocate

  4. Ana says:

    Would you happen to know if any of this doctors have offices in NJ?

  5. Bejah says:

    Hello people, I was just wondering and maybe others are as well…

    1. When/if a settlement is offered in a case what is the procedure…it is I assume presented to the plaintiffs counsel and then to the plaintiff (by phone or FED EX?) who may consider it and then respond in writing. Let’s assume they accept as most probably do for all of the predictible reasons (Some of these may be why the defendant will offer low ball settlements even in high value cases?). Then what happens? It goes to an outsourced entity that specializes in settlements and contracts with businesses for this purpose. This entity would then contact the recipient (plaintiff) with details and the annual distribution begins. Is the initial installment large and subsequent ones over perhaps 10-20 years smaller and in equal parts? What about tax? Is this money taxed? That would really start my teeth grinding in overdrive! What is the time line for all of this? Is it standardized or variable? We all hope for a settlement sooner rather than later. For some of us this is more critical because we can not afford our medication. we can not afford to pay for the surgery we need but do not have insurance coverage for, and for others of us who are struggling to not lose our homes and our lives. As the defendants maintain their illogical and ill fated resistance the skies grow darker for us all.

    2. I wanted to share with you that I have now been diagnosed with Bursitis in my hip. The pain is pretty terrible and the need to limp, to lay down varies. I do not know if this can be related to mesh implantation. If many people are experiencing this who also have mesh implants it may be but it must be said that it is evidently more common as we age so this may be difficult to sort out unless perhaps one is an expert. Evidently one can have the little bursa removed if nothing else helps. I was relieved to know that this is outside of the bone and is a sort of cushion. I think there are about 30 in the body. I can not walk my dogs much any more and this makes me so sad.

    3. If we were to opt for trial will it really be five years to wait?

    Thanks and best wishes to all. Happy spring, especially to Jane and her team.

    • Jan says:

      Bejah, I also have bursitis in the same hip side where the mesh has caused a pinched nerve, in the buttocks area. I limp and have not been able to sleep on that side for a long time. It is definitely related to the mesh.

      • kitty says:

        Hello. I am unable to sleep on right side sciatica as well on same side. This happened after mesh – but I never realized it was related until a couple years ago

        • Jan says:

          Kitty, I just had a total mesh removal and am just out of hospital. As I get off pain meds and go through the healing process, I’ll be able to post how the removal helps as far as sleeping again on that right side. Also the bursitis as I may need to have steroid shot for that. Hard to know anything at this point.

          • Jan,

            Johnson & Johnson Prolift was implanted May 2010. By January 3, 2011 I had the mesh removed. When you say totally removed are you aware that not every bit can be removed. I am at 4 years after removal and have gone from excellent health for 58 years to :

            weight gain of over 35 pounds

            bursitis in shoulder from falling due to nerve damage in legs

            can only sit about 20 minutes, stand about 15, walk about 2 blocks and have to lay down to ease pain in groin

            have no insurance anymore, all doctors and testing are cash and expensive

            fight depression, high blood pressure

            have had knots in the bottom of my feet since the original surgery to where i no longer can walk barefoot

            The list goes on and on. Not to mention only 20% vision in one eye due to cataract and 5 teeth that have literally broken off from gritting my teeth in pain while i sleep.

            No amount of money will ever change what those little bits of miracle plastic they stuck in me stopped my life as i knew it. Even after removal, the body fights pain so long the immune system weakens and everythings stops functioning properly

      • Bejah says:

        Hi Jan, Thanks for your post. The more we make these connections through communication the stronger our position is and the more difficult it will be for JNJ to weasel out of just compensation and punishment for what they have done. They speak of us as a population of women that just want money which is interestingly something anyone with a basic knowledge of psychology (My area of study is organizational psychology) knows is a basic projection: It is JNJ/Ethicon that is money hungry is it not?

        I have learned a little about the little bursas which are little sort of envelopes on the outside of the bone. When they become inflamed I guess we feel the pain most. They can be surgically removed as a last resort. I have been offered a shot (Cortisol I expect) if I first try a month of swimming laps to see if that will help. It does sort of but swimming releases endorphins and I am not sure how to distinguish….I go to a special medical pool that is warm salt water…doesn’t that sound wonderful? Alas no lap swimming so for that I must go to the HS pool here in the summer only. Heat helps me…laying on a heating pad on that side and alternating sides helps. Prescription pain medication (Methadone) helps the abdominal pain but not the bursa pain. I just can’t walk much or the pain gets bad but if I am out walking the dog and it gets bad if I stop and sit for a few minutes that helps and I can then make it home. I will let you know what I learn as time passes. A friend just had a luncheon hosted by the company Doterra. Read about it online. I bought some products and will report on them. It was recommended by an RN who is a friend. Some of these products may help us. I will let you know. Best wishes to all. Hope you find a way to feel better Jan.

        Bejah

        • Jan says:

          Bejah, I appreciate you giving me some options to try for the bursitis in my hip. The swimming sounds good if I’m able to do that. . My doctor told me to come back after mesh removal for steroid shots, but I’m concerned about having those shots as I’ve been told they can weaken the bones and I’m 65 so these things are important for my future health. I’ll definitely check out the company you suggested. Hope we can all help each other going forward.

        • Bejah says:

          I am using the Doterra Oregano oil on the base of my spine and where the bursitis is. It is supposed to help with the pain. I will post my thoughts in a week or so of use. Fairly expensive but if it works…it would be wonderful. I wonder if we could use hot peppers and rub them on our skin if they have Capiscan which seems to help with pain they say…or maybe we could cook the peppers….reduce them in a little water and mix the reduction with a carrier oil like almond oil or something. Desperation is the mother of invention!

          Bejah

    • Advocate says:

      Bejah,

      The settlement offers are presented to you in written form, by your attorney. You can either accept or reject the offer, but it’s in writing. If a settlement is reached, and you participate, your attorney submits your case to a Claims Administrator who confirms each plaintiff is in the correct award category, as set forth in the Settlement Agreement. Some Defense teams will choose to do away with the CA and review the individual cases themselves. Regardless, if the Plaintiff Attorney feels the client has been placed in the wrong group, they may appeal the decision to a Special Master (Usually a retired judge, agreed upon by both plaintiff and defense in the MDL), who in this case (all mesh cases), is Judge Maria Corodemus. Her decision on the client’s status is final.

      Then money for each case is sent to the Lien Resolution Company (LRC). They are like an escrow company in a home sale. They check to make sure all liens owed to the government, like Medicare and Medicaid, are paid. So, when they receive the money into escrow from the defense, the LRC releases the agreed upon amount to the attorney and keeps the agreed upon “hold back” until those liens, if any, are satisfied.

      There are two important issues here. First, before any monies are sent to attorneys, the mesh attorneys who are on the Steering Committee, (this committee is responsible for paying for all the bellwether case costs) receive an agreed upon percentage, to offset those early out of pocket costs. It runs between 2 and 7 percent. This is known as the common benefits fund and all MDL’s have one.

      The second item is, all bills against your case, medical, administrative and such, are paid out of the first release. This usually includes at least, a percentage of the attorney fees. Once all liens are cleared by the LRC, the rest of the money goes to the attorney who notifies you that your monies are in and ready for your disbursement.

      To your question of taxes, it’s always best to speak with your tax accountant or financial adviser about your specifics. In most cases there are no taxes taken by state or federal standards, in a settlement like you are talking about. In the case of trials, that’s not necessarily true. In several states, laws were passed in state legislatures to limit the awards a plaintiff can receive through trial verdict. This was often done under the pretense of “Tort Reform” to stop what states felt were frivolous law suits. In the states with those laws, they take a percentage of the award from the proceeds due the plaintiff. The highest of these percentages, that I know of, is in GA. They take, I believe, 75% of the plaintiffs money. Regardless of the exact percentage, it’s the highest in the country. These only apply to cases that were tried to verdict in the court and not in a negotiated settlement like we are speaking of.

      So how long does it typically take to get your money? From the time a Master Settlement is put in place (that’s the agreement between Defense and Plaintiff) it could be a year or little more before they are ready to submit cases to the CA. That’s usually why your attorney doesn’t mention the master agreement at its conception, because you can imagine the calls they begin to receive with the question of, “where’s my money”. From the time you sign your acceptance papers, it could be a couple months, depending on the stipulations of percentage of acceptance. Obviously, defense wants to write fewer checks than doing multiples a day, so they wait and will do them perhaps bi-monthly, or at least monthly.

      You asked about trial. The time it takes to get ready for a trial is substantial. Then of course, there is the problem of the trial docket. They only have so many trial days in a month and lots of different litigation and limited numbers of Judges to hear cases. This is usually the biggest delay in getting to the trial itself. Trial may take a couple weeks, depending on how long the judge gives each side to present their case. Then you have the appeals process if there is a plaintiff verdict and that will take months at least, to be heard by the appellant court. Then the timeline above, for monies to be handled, if there is a plaintiff verdict and it is upheld. While I couldn’t guess on the 5 years aspect, I would conservatively say, it would be a couple years for sure.

      I hope this helps answer some of the questions. There are always some deviations in the process, but this should give you a general idea of how it works and it’s always best to follow up with your attorney to know for sure.

      Advocate

      • Bejah says:

        Dear Advocate, Thank you so much for your thoughtful and thorough reply. I am certain many including me will benefit from it.

        Bejah

  6. Jessica Giardino says:

    Jane,

    Is there a blood test that can test levels of polypropylene? The lab in Colorado wants way too much money to test. This test is for before mesh is removed to prove toxic effects on immune system.

  7. tammy says:

    Thank you for explaining to me how the settlement. Will go i have ask my lawyer several. Times to explain it to me thet want im in hell an it looks like im going to be there for a good while i was butchered in 2010 an had it removed in 2012 no one gives adam very sad all i have been told is lies i wish i could get away from all this hell no pne should be treated. This way they all should be in jail its the devil but thanks for letting. Us know Bejah mine is going to drag out along time an this law ferm knows this an would not let me know so sick im ready to die an who cares thanks goverment for destroying. My life…

  8. dg says:

    There is light at the end of the tunnel.I was so blessed to have Dr Shlomo Raz remove the mesh
    The pain I was having in my back which felt like labor pains is now gone.I no longer have pain in my right hip and down my leg
    The fevers and body aches have subsided.I still have mild joint pain due to the autoimmune attack and arthritis that has developed,I am just grateful that Dr Raz found what no one else could.the mesh eroded into the center of my bladder so it was not visible but because he new I was having pain he agreed to proceed with the surgery. He saved my life I had a chronic septic infection and knew if he could not help me no one could. God sent me an angel.I have a friend wwho had her mesh removed by the doc who put it in and is still using mesh.she is in worse shape now then she was prior to surgery. I say if you are going to have mean removes see someone who can
    Remove it 100%like Dr Raz. god bless you all.I know this is a battle we are all fighting together.

    • stopmeshimplants says:

      Dr. Raz is the best surgeon for mesh removal. There are hundreds of stories on websites like these of women who thought they could stay local for the mesh removal surgery. Sadly, these same women are sometimes in worse shape than before the removal surgery. Take the time to investigate what many of us know already and that is Dr. Raz is the surgeon you want to perform your mesh removal. If you can get to him for a consult you will know why we are talking so positively about him. I am blessed that he helped me with my mesh removal. I still have nerve pain but he got the largest piece of the mesh out of me that no other doctor could.

  9. surgeryinmay says:

    thank you dg and stopmeshimplants… i seen dr raz in january for my consult. my surgery is scheduled for may. it helps reading that woman feel so much better after they had surgery by dr raz. . i sure hope i feel better. he told me, i was complicated, it would be intense, I’ve had several “revision” surgeries(not knowing that was the worst thing to do).

    I wish you both the BeST! I am counting the days!

    • Jan says:

      I had mesh removal surgery one week ago. I flew from Atlanta to St. Louis . I’m still on pain meds but I couldn’t be happier. Dr. Veronikis was able to remove all but a tiny piece. He is amazing! I will be posting more as I go through the healing process and will be happy to discuss my stay in St. Louis if anyone wants to contact me. It’s a very emotional time for me and I’m so upset that so many women are suffering.

      • Bejah says:

        Dear Jan, I am so happy for you as I am sure we all are. Let us know how you are doing from time to time. Take care.

        Bejah

        • Jan says:

          Bejah, thanks for your kind words. I will definitely be posting from time to time regarding my recovery. Of course I’m thrilled that Dr. veronikis was able to remove almost all the mesh, but I still don’t know what nerve damage I’ll be dealing with. Only time will tell. Meanwhile, I’m available to discuss my surgery in St. Louis for anyone contemplating going there. Dr. Veronikis takes Medicare, which really surprised me, since he is one of the best in the country for mesh removal.

    • Bejah says:

      We will be looking for good news from you early June. Hope all goes as you hoped it would.

      Bejah

  10. Terri says:

    Dear Advocate: I had a mesh done in 2008-revised 2009.sent home with cath I originally went in for incontenence now have 2 defective devices, sever vaginal , pelvic pain, Midline prolapse Cystocele, Rectocele, cystitis, bacteria, bladder, UTI constantly and on bactrum to prevent infections although still get them, Septis fallen bladder, lower back pain, bursitis, intimacy issues, now bleeding, extreme pain walking, doing any sort of activities, syatic nerve issues, weakness walking, in pain mangemnet, been seen by 2 specialists, PCP report needs surgery for both Cystocele, rectocele. 2 cystoscopys and 3 urodynamics shows 100% leakage, but yet no Doctor is willing to take out the 2 defective products and do what needs to be done eternally, depression as well. I have signed my agreement paper;s manufacturer has come forward to settle, a Special Master is in place along with a Lien person. So now the hired medical team are putting our cases together, I was a client who got all my paperwork together and sent in all visits and diagnosis, The last Doctor said it could be felt doing an internal, Should that be the case or would that be due to fallen bladder? Do they do so many hundred and get those cases settled first meaning where there are no liens, update material? How does that effect having Medicare, Mainecare??

    • Jane Akre says:

      Hi Terri-

      Your law firm should be able to negotiate any liens etc you are facing, is my understanding, as well as Medicare and bankruptcy court. But that is an excellent question for the firm. Will they advocate for you in that regard to maximize your payout? It will never be enough, no matter how much it is.

  11. Bejah says:

    Good day people, I was wondering if anyone can provide us with an “official” definition of “high value” as it is used to describe mesh injured people and their legal efforts to secure some kind of compensation. Actually for those of us who do not know, definitions of all the case value classifications would be helpful.

    If a woman is 38 and is mesh injured and has three school age children and a husband who has left her with a mortgage she can not pay how is such a case valued? What is considered and what is not considered and why. Can someone direct us to a legal website or should we try to gain access to a law library to find this information.

    I would also be interested in knowing what degree of subjectivity there may be in catagorizing cases, what variables or exceptions. If we believe that the body of law is intended to be a living thing in that it is not absolute and can not be if it is to be effective, how might this affect these mesh cases. Each case is to some degree unique and although they can be placed in broad catagories it remains that in the details there can be important differences.

    If a mesh injured university professor who is age 55 and mesh injured seeks compensation and justice is she discriminated against because she does not have young children at home and is near possible retirement?

    Or the 65 year old woman who survives only on social security and barely has enough income to survive, perhaps forced to share her home to make ends meet but has no societal value as an employee…how does the law address her situation?

    I think we all wonder if we will be treated fairly by our judicial system when we have been treated so unfairly and really horribly by those in the medical profession. I find it difficult to trust doctors at all any longer. It is as if the world has changed.

    Bejah

  12. Lucy Loo says:

    I received a letter from my lawyer yesterday stating that the mesh companies still are not willing to settle. They did, however, give a breakdown on how settlements would be given out. I don’t know if this is across the board or from my specific lawyer. Basically, four levels- 1) product being implanted w/o any further medical treatment (will probably not receive any settlement) 2)product being implanted with medical treatment (ie antibiotics 6 months or longer) 3)product being implanted with at least one revision under anesthesia 4) product being implanted with multiple revision surgeries under general anesthesia. Has anyone heard of this?

    • Jane Akre says:

      Which manufacturer are you referring to?

    • Bejah says:

      I heard that after the CA jury award of $5.7 Million JNJ decided to rethink its rigid position on settlement. Has anyone heard about this? Consider it hearsay until you can confirm it. Jane, any comment?

      Bejah

      • Jane Akre says:

        J&J will settled the day they decide to… until they say they will not. Personally, I believe it will be soon. They cannot stand this bad publicity, especially at the upcoming shareholders meeting.

    • Sandra says:

      As mentioned above PLEASE be careful what you post and YOUR REAL NAMES!! Did you see the last trial where the Defense Attorney’s used their tactics and showed pictures of the woman doing activities on vacation ect!! They also HIRE TO PAY certain Doctors to testify on there behalf the woman had to be examined by the Defense doctor and nothing found! I;m very happy for her however there didn’t seem to be much information in her medical records to back up her statements, even her doctor said these were the first time of hearing her complaints!! Every time I go to a doctor and I’m on the not nice side anymore I tell them document everything I said and your remarks and get a copy!! There was something wrong with my uterous when internal was done!! I explained that I’n really sick of no one listening to y complaints and brushing i off………….so referred me to a surgeon when they called to schedule she said your being referred to us for your monark tout and sling issues along with an issue with your uterous!! I said YES…………….finally someone is listening, been trying since 2008!!@ 2 specialist visits to the ER visits to my PCP. Lou lou I have heard about the category of putting clients in category’s I believe they are called Tiers.

    • Sandra says:

      Lucy Lou I believe that if woman didn’t have issues with the mesh then they were not implanted with defects

  13. Lucy Loo says:

    Jane, the letter wasn’t sent out for a specific company or product, it was generalized for all mesh companies. That is what struck me as odd; where does the lawyer know how the settlements will be broken down?

    • Advocate says:

      Lucy,

      AMS is the first to design a settlement offer. Once there is an agreement in place, all other manufactures will look to it as a guide for their settlements, with slight differences in how a plaintiff fits in a category. They will all be negotiating with the dollars of that first settlement as a guide. Expect each subsequent manufacturer to try and pay less but certainly not much more. It’s much like an appraisal of your home. It depends on what your neighbor sold a similar property for. This allows your attorney to make a calculated guess, as to the expected offer of other manufacture settlements.

      Advocate

    • Bejah says:

      Lucy, Could you possibly send a copy to Jane so perhaps she can post it so we can all see it and begin the process of determining its sourcing and distribution, etc. Thanks.

  14. Richard Howden aka All Meshed Up says:

    Many of the Bard/Kugel Mesh Victims that I have talked to were not informed of how much they would get until they were contacted about the settlement. In other words, what they were expecting/ hoped for was nothing near what they were “offered” and I use that word loosely. 2 people that I talked to were contacted by the Lawyer to try to get them to accept a lower catergory and settlement. When they said no they were told they would be contacted and have yet to be. This is an MDL that has been going on for a long time. What is true about them is that the Mesh Victim gets screwed. The Manufacturers do not get punished in any way and the Lawyers are the only one’s making money. It also must get easier for the Lawyer’s to set these MDL’s up as far as categorizing, “settlement” amounts and profit. Once they get into Court it must be just about the same as the MDL before it. I am pretty disgusted with the MDL process as I am with the fact that there are 100’s of 1000’s of Mesh Victims that will never be able to get their case heard or get any recompense at all.

    To another topic: Hip Pain, I have had problems sleeping on my right side because of hip pain for several years and have chocked it up to a crappy bed or just getting old. You Ladies have given me something else to think about and add to my symptoms list. Thank you.

    • Bejah says:

      Richard

      Thanks for the information (sort of). Can we have some good news now?

      What you have said does not seem to correspond with the judgements in court in this matter regarding compensation for victims. Could you please let us know what you would say about that?

      If what you say about settlement is true then many of us should try to go to trial I would think, especially if we are younger and have the resources (emotional and financial). Any comment, anyone?

      Sadly the longer I am alive the less I trust our government. Now I tend to see the nation as the people and the government as a separate entity, one that seems aligned with what some have called The Beast.

      When we are sad, when we feel hopeless and beaten down, when we feel or express rage…I think we make that force we might refer to as The Beast stronger so we must always remember to, while standing up to it, remain at peace, be grateful for what we have and never give up or give in.

      Bejah

      • Advocate says:

        Bejah,

        I’m going to attempt to be a reasonable voice in what I know is a highly, emotionally charged atmosphere.

        One cannot lump all attorneys into the same category. There are hundreds involved in these cases and while some have less experience than others, the vast majority are trying to do a good job. Remember none of the clients were “assigned” an attorney and you all have the right to fire your attorney. They do work for you, while keeping in mind they often have many clients just like you. I know some clients who phone the attorney daily. We all must realize how counter productive that must be, if the firm has a significant volume of cases and everyone called that often.

        Most of the problems are communication based. That’s reflected in unrealistic expectations of the client/attorney and the lack of attorneys carefully explaining the process or clients hearing what they want to hear. For most people, this is their first exposure to our legal system and frankly, it looks nothing like what they envisioned it to be. Emotions run high for the client and they are expecting the legal representation to reflect the same level of fire. That’s not the job of counsel. Their job is to show passion for the cause, compassion for the client, but emotion should not be in play. This is a subtle difference in the roles, but indeed substantial in the process.

        Many have lashed out at the MDL. You must understand the purpose of a MDL and then you are better prepared for out comes. MDL’s are designed with the intent to gather information, the work known as discovery. Then share it with all attorneys involved. Many firms would be buried financially, if they were required to collect this information for your case on their own. The MDL lessens the financial burden.

        Secondly, it allows for the bellwether trials to take place, to establish a verdict, either for the plaintiff or the defense. These verdicts are supposed to motivate either party to collectively settle the cases. It doesn’t say how much the settlements should be, but provides an opinion on how juries around the country might find in trial. Obviously, wins and losses move the needle for both sides. The MDL idea is based on saving time versus how long it would take a case to make it to trial in any given state. So even if your attorney had the financial resources to go to trial and had the litigation experience to win at trial (not all attorneys are litigators nor created equal, no matter what they say) your state court systems would likely be crushed by the volume. It would not surprise me if some were so adversely affected, that it could take 10 years or more to get the day in court. Think of it this way, it takes approximately 2 weeks to do a mesh trial. That’s 26 cases a year with no delays. 1 judge taking no other type of case, no vacations, no sick days. How many judges sit on your state court panels to hear trials? You can begin to see the issue, I’m sure.

        Now to the issue of monetary expectations. These bellwethers definitely give false hope to each victims case value. There were never and I say never, going to be enough money in these settlements to compensate victims for all those reasons they should be compensated. Personally, I have always hoped there would be a settlement that allowed the victims to receive much needed medical care, at least to restore as much health as humanly possible. The lost homes, relationships, jobs and life styles are tragic to say the least. There was never, nor will ever be, enough money to make that better. But helping you get medical treatment, in my mind, is the least they can do. As devastating as this landscape is, I pray all of you get the medical attention you deserve.

        Judge Goodwin is a good man, a fair jurist and is certainly aware of all of you and your sufferings. He’s prepared to remand (send back to your state) cases and that will start filling the state trial calendars. If you are dissatisfied with the agreements that are being set, you have the right to say no. Your attorney might not be the one you want taking your case to trial so make that part of your consideration. No matter how much you believe your case is a slam dunk, trial is never better than 50/50. Ask those who lost their cases in Massachusetts. There is no perfection out there, but I do pray you all find some relief and peace.

        Advocate

  15. Toni says:

    The way I see this whole thing is that the mesh manufacturers , the lawyers , the doctors the judges the FDA none of them care. The only way we as the victims will ever get any kind of satisfaction from the harm inflicted on us is band together completely and make the media listen. I don’t mean in a small way I mean in a huge way. Not on a sight that is geared to mesh like this. Although I must say this site is great for education and putting the pieces of the puzzle together for all of us. Waiting around for the ones who have victimized us to do something makes no sence to me. The world needs to hear the facts and not let them give us some small amount of money to keep our mouths shut. They have done us wrong from the point before they ever implanted any of us. I thought getting an attourney would help. But they seem to be just waiting around for a payday. What are they doing to truly help us. I get feed the same crap everytime I talk to my lawyer. I want very much to go to court but was told I couldn’t I would have to wait to see the settlement. I don’t want to settle and we should not be forced to do so. We need to somehow form huge protests till this is on international news. Not sit around and wait for them to screw us even more. Sorry but I have been home from work for 2 days which is a regular occourance because I hurt so bad I can’t stand up. I have had no help from Doc’s but more pain and no help. I am angry as hell right now that this could accually be happening in this country I thought was so great. We are just their lab rats. It needs to stop.

  16. Renae says:

    I am so glad that autoimmune problems are finally being mentioned. I have thyroid cancer and hashimotos, I have a 4 day whole body scan in two weeks along with a biopsy in my thyroid and a biopsy in my neck. I am so sick, I barely get out of bed. It is like poison is running thru my veins! 🙁

  17. Renae says:

    I also have fibromyalgia, now my white blood count is low….they are also checking me for lupus 🙁

    • Lucy Loo says:

      Renae, I hope you find strength to endure this nightmare. After five surgeries, I still have not received much relief. The mesh is determined to find a way out of my body. One day at a time.

  18. Richard Howden aka All Meshed Up says:

    Hello Bejah, what I mean is that individual cases are garnishing huge sums of settlement money. The MDL’s gave out $4500-$5000 to most of the Bard/Kugel Hernia Mesh Victims. The Endo case was settled for $840,000,000 with 2000 women participating. Sounds great in an advertisement but when you realize that most of the women got about $20,000-$40,000 each. 40% to the Lawyers, Court costs, Medicaid, Medicare etc took all of the rest. The MDL process was set up to get as many Mesh Victims through Court as quick as possible and one of the results is that the Manufacturers get off relatively easy. They are still marketing their Mesh and they are still making money off of the plastic monster that wiped someones life away. The Victims involved in these MDL’s thought they would have a “Substantial Settlement” just like the TV advertisement said. After many years of waiting and hoping, they get such a small amount that it is more insult than anything else.

    That is what I think and mean when it comes to MDL’s for Mesh Victims. There has to be a better, more equitable way for Mesh Victims who have had their lives and health taken from them to get just compensation. This has to be an amount that will be a benefit for them to go forward with their lives and the Manufacturer’s get their butt kicked in the process! They cannot be allowed to pay so little to so many and turn around and sell the same device to your neighbor. But that is exactly what they are doing.

  19. Toni says:

    I totally agree Richard. They have ruined a lot of lives here but it’s business as usual. Until we all come together in a huge way this will be what happens. This should be headline news. This behind the scences stuff is not getting anywere. We must embarrass these so called careing companies and expose them to the world to get satisfaction.

  20. Richard Howden aka All Meshed Up says:

    Thanks Toni. This is what I know about trying to get attention about what Surgical Mesh can and is doing in the Human body. After my second implant I became very involved with Bruce Rosenberg in compiling data, testimony, medical reports and communications by Victims, the Manufacturer( at that time it was mostly J&J and Bard ) and the FDA.

    Bruce has a video made by J&J/Ethicon in which their Doctor talked about the problems with their Hernia Mesh, Prolene. He goes on for several minutes talking about how thick and non-pliable it was. He mentions how it is 100 times stronger than it needs to be. And how patients will be having medical problems because of it. Then he goes on to talk about their “New!” “Improved!” and “Thinner, more pliable, Prolene Hernia Mesh”. This one video shows that J&J knew many years ago that their were inherent problems with their Prolene Mesh, which is made of Polypropylene.

    Bruce contacted the FDA, the DOJ, the Attorney Generals Office and many State AG’s as well and showed then this video. Many were shocked. Many said that something must be done. Many said that “they would look into it”. None of them did a damn thing about it.

    It did not matter what kind of evidence we had, e-mails from J&J to the FDA and back and forth, letters and testimony made no difference what so ever. I spent several days talking to the FDA’s Criminal Investigative Office, giving them my medical records and other evidence that I had collected and to this day nothing was ever done with it.

    So, Toni, you are right about getting on TV and having rally’s. I am totally with you on that. But when a TV network wants to ask the FDA about the problems with mesh, they are told that we are the few and disgruntled. And that is where the TV investigative report ends. We have to find a way to drag the FDA, kicking and screaming, into a Congressional Hearing. They are going to have to be forced to admit that there is and has been an inherent problem with Surgical Mesh, especially Polypropylene. Until that time, when we can have the “authority’s” say in plain language that Mesh in all it’s forms is a dangerous product to use, none of our arguements will go anywhere. Why there has not been anything done about mesh by the FDA, DOJ or even the Congress or Senate, shows what kind of power the Manufacturer’s money has. I know I am a “Gloomy Gus” about a lot of this but these are the facts as I see them and I have been trying to make a change for 8 years now.

    I believe the one way to make that change is by contacting your Senator or Congressman and demand action. The next would be to organize a LARGE rally with as many Mesh Victims as possible.

    Best Wishes…….

    • Bejah says:

      Dear Richard and all mesh damaged people,

      All of these ideas about organizing, writing, protesting, etc. are wonderful but no matter how passionate we are for some reason nothing much seems to happen, at least not to the degree we imagine it should. I don’t know why, perhaps it is because we are not feeling very well (to put it mildly) or we are just feeling too wounded and overcome so we do what we can.

      I wanted to mention something else…remember that anyone can read here or post a comment. Perhaps there are JNJ representatives posing as mesh injured and trying to say things to discourage us so always read comments with a critical eye. Never underestimate the evil doers.

      What will they do as they become increasingly desperate? Will they give in and settle these legitimate cases? Will they continue to stall, refuse to consider settlement, or re-organize Ethicon, throwing out all cases against it (Can they do that?) rather than honorably address the thousands of legitimate actions filed against it? If they do Americans will not stop buying LIsterine or the thousands of other products they produce. Where does that leave us? If I file bankrupcy I can not list my mortgage, for example. I think the rules are different for corporation. And if the fules do not suit JNJ it will simply have the rules changed. What then is the definition of a Democracy? Do we live in a Democracy? Are all of us going to vote in November? Are 30% of registered voters going to the polls this fall or 20%? I wonder if one of the reasons we end up with monsterous corporations like JNJ is because we do not take care of our Democracy. We take it for granted and have for a long time. Many economic scholars are predicting an economic crises in 2016. How will that effect us and our cases against the defendant corporations? In a global economic crises the government is going to take care of its corporate citizens, not me.

      Bejah

    • Renae says:

      We need Erin Brockovich!!!!!! 🙂

  21. Toni says:

    Yes a large rally would be exactly what I am talking about. Or at the least rally’s all over the country and abroad all organized to be the same day in front of a local courthouse may do the trick if they get small reports from all over maybe we could draw some attn to this issue maybe they would stop and have to listen. How many of us have to money to travel a long distance to make it happen. Well guess the next step would be D.C. since the company’s are all over the U.S that made these products.

  22. surgeryinmay says:

    EVERYONE..

    GO to http://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/transvaginal-mesh

    read it, comment, share it, it can’t hurt..

    the celebrity that tweeted about it was on Jimmy Fallon that same night. the comments on the tweets that she made are not very nice. People have no idea what Mesh does to you…

  23. Richard Howden aka All Meshed Up says:

    Anybody thinking I am an “evil doer” or not who I say I am is sorely mistaken! I may be more pessimistic than most but that is because I have been in this fight against Surgical Mesh since 2007. I have had my hopes for reform or even being able to get into Court to try and get some compensation scrapped, even as I try to keep something similar to the life I had. At least you women are seeing Court cases being settled for Millions of dollars and you have the possibility of your day in Court!

    We Hernia Mesh Victims have lost our health, livelihoods, homes, Family, Friends and our dignity! We Hernia Mesh Victim’s are forgotten even by YOU women when a protest or Rally is organized! There are as many, if not MORE , Hernia Mesh Victim’s out here than Gynecological Mesh Victims, yet we are forgotten. You all keep talking about what J&J has done or what Bard has done but we, the Hernia Mesh injured, have been dealing with their B.S. for YEARS without a peep from the FDA. You now at least have the FDA, maybe, possibly recategorizing some of the Gynecological mesh products. You have Lawyers out the Wazoo scrambling to get your case! Yet we cannot find a Lawyer or a Court to even talk to us! You sure as HELL don’t see any Lawyer’s on this site looking for Hernia Mesh victims! The Hernia Mesh MDL in Rhode Island was a joke and a sham. Many of those people that were clients are still waiting for their money or answers even though others have been paid off. J&J/Ethicon has said it will not settle any more Hernia Mesh cases. Bard has said the same although they have made some concessions. YOU women have the Manufacturers, at least, paying out money to victims whereas we Hernia Mesh men AND women are screwed.

    So yes, I am pessimistic as hell. Even this morning I have been contacted by yet another Hernia Mesh victim who has lost everything, is sick and has no where to go and no answers. I am asked why the FDA is not warning Hernia patients about mesh if there are so many injured. I am constantly asked about a Lawyer and why they cannot find one when there are so many advertising on TV for Gynecological Mesh! I have NO answers for those people I would love to help find a competent Doctor who can remove a Hernia Mesh and “get them back to where they were before Mesh”. The Doctor’s that advertise on here say they are “Mesh Experts” which they are IF you have Gynecological Mesh. They do not remove Hernia Mesh, I called hoping to add them to my list. I only bring this up because of how they advertise their expertise. Please remember this about a Hernia Mesh removal, you STILL have the hernia and it has to be repaired somehow. Especially if you now have a huge hole where the Mesh was, as I did. That is how I got my Bard/Kugel installed.

    We ALL have things common when it comes to a Mesh injury. We will never be the same as we were before the Mesh implant. We have all been experimented on. We have all been either decieved or lied to by our Doctor(s), the Manufacturer’s and the FDA. Now that we are no longer a “consumer” of Mesh we are an enemy to and of the companies that make it. We are in pain physically, mentally and spiritually. We need help, compassion, compensation and RETRIBUTION. We need to force the FDA to make changes.

    Best Wishes….;………

    • surgeryinmay says:

      Richard,

      I am so sorry..

      i have read your posts, i have never thought of you as a “evil doer” You have been hurt since 2007, damn..TERRIBLE.. 8 whole years.. so sad.

      I have been injured since 2011, i feel like i am evil. I’m hurt. my feelings just as much as physically. i had no idea about mesh anything till 2013. i knew something was wrong with me, but had no idea it was mesh till i had to have emergency surgery in july 2013.

      This past year I found out about hernia mesh..from reading your posts and doug’s. i have 2 friends that are hurt by hernia mesh, but the doctors try to fool them, they’ve had soo many surgeries and problems, one of them is a young man that goes to my church, he has cerebral palsy. i tell his mom that i feel sure that a lot of his problems are because of the hernia mesh, they don’t believe me.. even though she knows and sees the shape that I’m in when she comes to visit me, because i can’t sit on the pew at church.

      I seen your post, and just wanted to send I am very sorry. ALL MESH is bad. we should not have to suffer. i wish i could give you some advice, i just don’t have any. but i do have compassion for you and all the other mesh injured men and women.

      Hugs to U Richard…

    • Bejah says:

      Dear Richard, Just for the record, I was NOT refering to you by any stretch of the imagination. Please forgive me for upsetting you. If you were referring to my comment please know that it was a general blanket comment, that is all.

      Bejah

    • Jane Akre says:

      I keep hoping that when the FDA gets enough adverse event reports concerning hernia mesh that it will recognize the issue. Please, if you are hernia mesh injured, do report your situation to the FDA. It is not a good or even working system, but it is all we have. Thank you.

  24. Richard Howden aka All Meshed Up says:

    No worries Dear Ladies, I am just voicing what many cannot and trying to help those that cannot be helped in the way they want or need.

    I am very much aware of my situation after this many years. There really is not anything that can be done for me. Unless the Bard/Kugel breaks inside of me, which will be devistating to me, no Doctor wants to even attempt to remove my mesh. But I am doing Ok as compared to others. I am in pain every day to varying degrees but there are other Mesh Victims that are in so much worse condition than I. I have educated myself about Mesh and what it can do. There are so many victims of mesh out there that have no idea what is happening to them. Their Doctor’s do not help or just lie out right. Their Families, wives, husbands, parents, kids and friends have no idea what they are experienceing. After a while they no longer believe that the victim is really in pain etc. What in the name of God is going on when so many people are egregiously harmed by a Medical device that was supposed to help them and the FDA and Doctors ignore us?

    That is my major problem here. After so many years of just trying to get attention for Hernia Mesh victims, with NOTHING from our FDA, DOJ or the Medical Community of help, we are still in the same situation. Now we have Gynecological Mesh and I see the Courts, the Manufacturers and the FDA doing to you women what was done to us Hernia Mesh victims!

    I do not believe or trust the FDA. I do not believe nor trust our Court system. I do not trust the Lawyers that fight so hard to get your case but forget you when the money comes. I hate the Doctors that put so many Mesh products into men and women who now say they are our Champions to get the crap out. I have been seeing the same crap, out of the same people, for years. And after a while I have become cynical and pessimistic because I see that it is everyone for themselves and screw the rest.

    Sorry, but that is just what I have seen, heard, read and experienced with Mesh. It would be nice if we could get a thousand victims to protest in front of J&J or the Capital building in Washington DC.. But it seems that one group of Mesh victims would want the spot light as opposed to the other Mesh victim’s group because they believe that they are the really injured ones. We have no organization of ALL Mesh Injured because being Mesh injured is such a personal thing. And until we ALL come together under one “banner” the Manufacturers will take advantage of us, the Doctor’s will continue to lie to us and play both sides and the FDA will continue to ignore us and be the tool for the Manufacturers to make more money.

  25. Richard Howden aka All Meshed Up says:

    I have to agree with you, Jane, concerning the FDA and their MAUDE data base. We all must report to the data base if nothing else other than to start collecting their and the Manufacturer’s response letters. I have several and report to the data base very so often just to see if they are still telling the reportee that “with 2 or 3 documented reports an Alert will be issued” to the public.

    Doctor’s are not reporting to the MAUDE data base with concise information backed up with Pathology reports thereby not substantiating and backing up a Mesh Victims report.

    The FDA is NOT requiring a removed Mesh product, a Medical Device gone bad, to be immediately sent to the FDA along with a report from the Doctor so that it can be analyzed for the reason it caused harm.

    With 100’s of 1000’s of complaints that have been registered to the MAUDE data base there seems to be no interest from the FDA. A majority of the complaints in the data base are closed because of ” no material was sent to be analyzed” or “no sample was recieved” so the determination is moot. That way the FDA can say there is no evidence in their data base to substantiate the claims by the injured!

    But if “FeeFee” died from a tainted Doggie Treat from China all Holy Hell breaks out! Senate Sub-commitee’s, Prosecution, jail time and fines are metted out so fast it makes make your head spin.

    How many Mesh Victims, Injured and Survivors are there? 100,000? 500,000? It is hard to say but it does not matter according to the FDA. And until they recognize us as an enormous group of people that were experimented on and severely damaged by a product that was supposed to be benign and was Approved by them, we will not be able to get the Justice we deserve.

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