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Prolift Pelvic Mesh Found Defectively Designed, Plantiff Awarded $5.5 Million, Punitives to be Determined

J&J logoMesh News Desk, December 21, 2015 ~ A Philadelphia jury today ruled Johnson & Johnson (J&J) must pay a mesh-injured woman $5.5 million in compensatory damages for its negligence over the defectively designed Prolift pelvic mesh. The jury will return for deliberations Tuesday over punitive damages which could add millions to the verdict in a damaging blow to the company.

This was the second product liability trial over Prolift, one of the largest pelvic meshes ever produced used to treat pelvic organ prolapse and incontinence.  The first Prolift trial of Linda Gross in 2013 resulted in a $11.1 million ruling for Ms. Gross but did not find the mesh was defective in its design. That verdict is still under appeal.prolift box 200

In the two-week trial of Patricia Hammons, 64, the jury found for the plaintiff on all three claims – defective design, a failure to warn doctors about its dangers and negligence in manufacturing and in bringing the Prolift to market.

Does this verdict bring J&J to the settlement table?  Plaintiff attorney Adam Slater (Mazie Slater) says he is not settling his clients for cheap.

“We never made a settlement demand from Day One. We told them we intended to take this case to a verdict.”

Slater says high-level executives within Ethicon were watching the trial.

Adam Slater, Mazie, Slater

Adam Slater, Mazie, Slater

”J & J has displayed an attitude so far they don’t care what the jury says, they don’t care what the judge says, they’re bigger than everyone else. They do things on J&J’s terms.  That’s my impression of them.”

This is the first case heard in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas with at least 181 other cases filed against Ethicon, a division of J&J,  over its pelvic mesh to be heard in rapid succession beginning in January 2016.  Additionally there are 8,000 pelvic mesh cases filed against Ethicon in New Jersey and 30,312 cases (as of today) filed in Charleston WV where federal consolidation of cases under multidistrict litigation.

Attorneys for Ms. Hammons were Shanin Specter of Kline & Specter and Adam Slater of Mazie Slater.

This marks the first time document destruction by J&J has been brought before a jury.  See the MND background stories here and here.

Defense team included Matt Moriatiry of Tucker Ellis, Susan Robinson of Thomas Combs.

Attorney Shanin Specter (Kline & Specter said the Prolift pelvic mesh implant has too much mesh which causes scar tissue, mesh contraction and erosion.  The amount of mesh could stretch across two-and-a half football fields, he told jurors. Ms. Hammons suffers mesh erosion into her bladder and “excruciating” pain during sex or dyspareunia. The mesh was found to have folded under her bladder and repeated surgeries have caused a shortened vagina.

Patricia L. Hammons v Secant Medical, Ethicon, in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, Case No.  2:13-cv-04086. Secant is the maker of a component of the polypropylene mesh implant. 

The defense team blamed pain during sex on the plaintiff’s hysterectomy she underwent in 2009 and additional prolapsing of her small bowel and uterus.  Prolift had nothing to do with the fact she later developed the bowel prolapse, she said.

Ethicon removed Prolift from the market three years ago after the U.S Food and Drug Administration required it to do three year post approval monitoring for its effects on woemen.  Mesn Hews Desk has since found Prolift available online on ebay.

This trial has been limited to two weeks by Judge Mark I. Bernstein.

Expect defective product trials naming pelvic meshes made by Ethicon to be heard in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Dallas all beginning in January 2016.  #

LEARN MORE:

MND on how Prolift was brought to market

http://meshmedicaldevicenewsdesk.com/10023-2

 

 

 

 

26 Comments

  1. Sue says:

    Congratulations to all the Pelvic Mesh Sufferers out there for this verdict. Now Please someone go after Atrium Medical’s Pro Loop Mesh and Plug for Hernias!!!

    Thank you!!

  2. janet says:

    This us such a blessing

    These manufacturers know what they have done

    Like I have said they vomited the same in the late 90’s and settled those cases in 2003.those women all had the same issues as this go around

    I know I will always investigate all before I ever use any product from any one of these manufacturers. I really do not trust them and that is sad.but we all have been through hell and back because of there faulty products .and then they will not do what’s right by us

  3. Dawn says:

    God bless Patricia the truth is starting to be seen …may we all be blessed this holiday season and the tears to come. If we don’t have our health , our lives are a great struggle.

  4. Linda says:

    Hooray for this family!!! Now on to punitive and then appeal. Today is a victory but now they have to wait for the appeal process. It’s absolutely unbelievable what they (J and J) get away with. I would like to know, when they appeal why don’t they have to pay all the court costs throughout the appeal process? Jane thanks for the info Congratulations to the attorney’s that were able to get the FACTS out and especially destruction of records.

  5. Liz says:

    We’ll that is just amazing. Great work attorneys and congratulations Patricia Hammons!!!!

    It will be a Merry Christmas!

  6. K says:

    Thank you Jesus!!! Thank you Jane for all you do even when reporting has been difficult! Thanks for hanging in there with us

  7. K says:

    Jane, why would this judge allow evidence of distruction and Judge Goodwin does

    Not allow it? At least I don’t remember him allowing it.

    • Jane Akre says:

      No he hasn’t allowed it so far. I’m not certain (lawyers chime in here) but sometimes a judge will give something to each side and since Magistrate Eifert did not conclude it was intentional or malicious, it sort of its an open ended issue.

      • Janet says:

        Judge Goodwin really needs to allow this type of hiding from these manufacturers. It’s called Justice and doing what’s right .

        The jury’s also needs to be informed of the Mesh cases before that were settled in 2003..this stuff should have never been out there to be used. If I would have known any of this of the past I would have said NO..I really believe these manufacturers hid all of this to there advantage

        I would like to see these manufacturers do what’s right from there poor judgment. .

        We do not want a billion each

        But we really need to be compinsated for there mistakes and there poor judgment. .we need to be cared far as long as it takes and our damage they caused it’s called do right by us..

        It’s sad but I hope they would want someone to do them right

        If it was one of there wifes, dayghters, sister,employee, or friend

        This all needs to be over we have been patient enough and still going through Hell because of them

        Stand up and tell the truth we screwed up and we will fix it..

        Stop throwing away money that could help settle

        • Jane Akre says:

          That’s a very good point. These are $500 an hour lawyers…. a trial is a very expensive proposition for the Defense…. Wow! Tally the dollars that could go elsewhere…..I’m sure that’s what the accountants are doing right now.

  8. Hal Lewis says:

    Evidence of the document destruction is HUGE!

    The more trials where this is admitted… the more likely it is that future judges will allow it into evidence as well.

    Jurys HATE cover-ups.

  9. stopmeshimplants says:

    Hallelujah! So thankful this jury listened to the facts and responded accordingly. Hopeful J & J has major punitive damages

    brought against them tomorrow! Thank you for this update Jane.

  10. Don't give up says:

    Huge and there coming back with Punitive damages to,if this doesn’t get there attention I don’t know what will I hope they come to there senses and settle they have a lot of cases coming up in the New Year in the hundreds.Why was there big executives from J&J Ethicon watching this trial closely……? Thanks Jane

  11. anonymous says:

    Thank God another victory for women are you listening AMS and the rest of you you offer

    $300,000 to $400,000 for someone who is severely hurt when a jury and a judge can order 5.5 million dollars well forget it it isn’t going to happen I don’t care what you have put inside of you once again the verdict is the products are defective

  12. kitty says:

    The deep snd agonizing pelvic pain that awoke me at this time is more bareable hearing this news. And thank u Jane for bringing it to the suffering souls.

  13. kitty says:

    The is LIVE stream of ending arguments on Arrorney David Gruber Web site.

  14. Bejah Blue says:

    Thank you GOD. Thank you Jane. I wonder how many of us have the Prolift. Someone, I can not remember who, said that Johnson & Johnson has a pattern of being defiant in the face of mounting evidence against it in cases like this and maintains this posture for years and then at some point the corporation relents and does a global settlement to finally put the case behind it. I pray for all concerned that they relent soon. This can not be good for employee morale and one can only wonder what shareholders think. They are not, I suspect, concerned only about ROI irrespective of all else.

    I also wanted to share with ya’all that there is a film, a documentary airing on LINK TV now that we should all watch. It is about Tort reform and it is very enlightening. I can not remember the exact name but it is something about a cup of coffee and I think that may refer to a case some time ago when a person at a McDonalds sued the company after hot coffee spilled on their lap. Try to watch it. It has won many awards and you will learn a lot.

    Best wishes to all,

    Bejah

  15. Christie says:

    Thank God , time for j and j to pay for what we have to live with!

  16. Janet says:

    They will most likely put an appeal on the judgement

    Because they love throwing away money

    And making us suffer even more and longer

  17. Lana Keeton says:

    $JNJ is run by criminals. They have no intention of doing what is right. CEO @alexgorsky owns substantial shares in #JNJ.

    • Janet says:

      The sad part of all this with Johnson & Johnson is that company would rather spend money fighting and throwing it away just to not do what is right.

      And if I had shares in that company I would sell off. .I would rather have shares in a company that is honest and will do what’s right by the people. .I pray everyday that God will handle there dishonesty on us

  18. Sandra says:

    First time on this forum!

    My mom has been tremendously hurt by three defective mesh that were implanted in her body.

    She filed a law suit in 2011 but her lawyer doesn’t seem to help since she hardly ever hears from him and at this point she has no updates on her case.

    If anybody can help with more info about this mesh process, please let me know! She lives in NM!

    Thank you!

    • Jane Akre says:

      Hi Sandra- Welcome! What kind of meshes does your mother have…. Three! Yikes…. Be sure to visit the facebook page and ask questions. You will be sure to get lots of answers….

  19. […] PROLIFT FOUND DEFECTIVELY DESIGNED – It was the last trial of 2015, the Hammons trial in Philadelphia Court (here) of Common Pleas found Prolift was defectively designed and awarded Ms. Hammons $5.5 million in compensatory damages. The jury returned to award $7 million in punitive damages. MND coverage here. […]

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