Mesh News Desk, February 2, 2016, Sherrer Verdict ~
In its second day of deliberations, jurors in the only pelvic mesh trial to name two defendant manufacturers in the same action, handed defendants Boston Scientific and CR Bard a victory in a Kansas City, Missouri product liability trial.
Voting 10-2, jurors rejected the contention by plaintiff Eve Sherrer that the Bard Align and Boston Scientific Solyx were defective and that the companies failed to warn doctors about their dangers and that the meshes were the cause of injuries to plaintiff, Eve Sherrer. Sheerer had sought $28 million in her product liability lawsuit.
The verdict was reported by Missouri Lawyers Weekly reporter Jessica Shumaker via Twitter after Mesh News Desk lost access to the courtroom camera due to a reader's unfavorable comment about defense attorney, Lori Cohen (Greenberg Traurig).
The plaintiffs in this case had to prove, by the preponderance of the evidence, that the Solyx (Boston Scientific) and Align (C.R. Bard) were both defective and caused physical damages to Ms. Sherrer. They also were charged with proving the alleged failure to warn her physicians about the risks caused her damages.
The jury also has the opportunity to award Ms. Sherrer punitive damages, which have typically run into the millions of dollars. Both companies insist their products are safe and effective and the "gold standard" for treating incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.
The verdict is a sharp departure from jury decisions of the past.
*Update* Boston Scientific is facing in excess of $128 million in jury awards to 14 plaintiffs so far in litigation that began in 2014. In April of 2015, Boston Scientific offered its first settlement to 3,000 pelvic mesh-injured women of $119 million.
Boston Scientific was recently charged with racketeering allegations for allegedly smuggling counterfeit polypropylene resin into the U.S. from China and using it to make pelvic mesh products. See the story here.
CR. Bard is facing in excess of $7 million in jury awards to six plaintiffs. In October 2014, the company offered to settle 500 cases for $21 million. *
As of today, Bard is facing 12,955 cases and Boston Scientific 19,829 cases all filed in federal court in Charleston, WV where multidistrict litigation has been consolidated. Including all seven manufacturers there are 86,445 cases in that single court. That does not include cases filed in state courts and around the globe.
The jury got down to its first full day of deliberations Tuesday after choosing a foreperson. Jurors wanted to see medical reports submitted at trial by Dr. Vladimir Iakovlov, a pathologist, but that request was denied on the basis they were for demonstrative purposes only.
Dr. Iakovlov had showed jurors in a November 2014 trial in Miami against Boston Scientific, that mesh hardens like a piece of plastic and incites inflammation causing scar tissue to encapsulate the mesh as it tries to distance itself from the invader. He authored a study in 2013 “Mesh is Not Inert," here.
Eve Sherrer, 65, from Oklahoma, was implanted with the first mesh by Dr. Peter Greenspan, an Ob-Gyn, to treat her condition of incontinence. (*Note an earlier version said he had implanted both meshes).
The 40-day trial was the longest in pelvic mesh litigation history and also unusual in that it pitted one plaintiff against two separate mesh manufacturers, C.R. Bard of Murray Hill, New Jersey, and Boston Scientific (BSX) of Marlborough, MA.
Both companies are among the largest manufacturers of pelvic mesh crafted of polypropylene used to treat stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse in women. A similar mesh is used in the treatment of hernias. Pelvic organ mesh is implanted transvaginally or through incisions in the vagina, thought to introduce a bacterial colony from the clean/contaminated field that is difficult if impossible to treat. Infections, mesh erosion, nerve injury, mesh migration, chronic pain, are among the many symptoms women report in this litigation.
Judge Robert M. Scheiber heard the case in the 16th Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri, Jackson Co Courthouse beginning Wednesday, December 2. Jury selection began Monday, November 30.
BARD BOSTON SCIENTIFIC TRIALS TO DATE
Mesh News Desk has been following these product liability trials since 2013. The following represents our accounting of the actions so far that we've covered:
Boston Scientific Verdicts so far representing 14 plaintiffs in 8 trials, $128 million in losses, four verdicts for BSX.
October 2015 – Carlson v Boston Sci – Verdict for the company maker of Uphold pelvic mesh, Statesville, NC
October 2015 – Barba v Boston Sci - $100 million to Deborah Barba and her husband. Implanted with Pinnacle Pelvic Floor repair kit and Advantage Fit.
Punitive damages were later reduced as well as compensatory damages to $10 million by Judge Mary Miller Johnston. Delaware, New Castle Co. https://www.meshmedicaldevicenewsdesk.com/boston-scientific-denied-new-trial-in-100-million-barba-case
May 2015 – Sanchez v Boston Scientific – Case settles before closing arguments. Pinnacle Pelvic Floor Repair Kit and the Advantage Transvaginal Mid-Urethral Sling System. Terms not disclosed. Los Angeles. https://www.meshmedicaldevicenewsdesk.com/ms-sanchez-not-warned-about-her-mesh-implants-lawyers-say
April 2015- Boston Scientific offers first settlements to 3,000 pelvic mesh injured women of $119 million.
November 2014 – Tyree v Boston Scientific, four plaintiffs were awarded $18.5 million. All four were implanted with the Obtryx mesh, a mid-urethral sling. The award includes $4 million in punitive damages. Tyree v Boston Scientific, Charleston, WV
November 2014 – Eghnayem v. Boston Scientific, Four plaintiffs awarded $26.7 million. All four were implanted with the Pinnacle Pelvic Mesh Repair Kit. Miami, FL. https://www.meshmedicaldevicenewsdesk.com/breaking-news-jury-decides-28-million-for-four-women-injured-by-boston-scientific-pelvic-mesh
September 2014 – Salazar v. Boston Scientific - $73,465,000. (Includes $50 million in punitive damages), Martha Salazar was implanted with the Obtryx mid-urethral sling. Dallas
August 2014 – Cardenas v. Boston Scientific, Jury delivers verdict for Boston Scientific. Obtryx mid urethral sling. Middlesex Co. MA
July 2014 – Albright v. Boston Scientific, Jury delivers verdict for Boston Scientific. Albright was implanted with the Pinnacle Pelvic Floor Repair Kit. Middlesex Co. Massachusetts, headquarters of Boston Sci. https://www.meshmedicaldevicenewsdesk.com/plaintiff-loses-first-boston-scientific-pelvic-mesh-trial
CR Bard Verdicts so far, 6 plaintiffs, 3 settled, $7 million in losses and numerous settlements
February 2015 – Wise v CR Bard, Settlement offered to Wise, terms not disclosed, Implanted with Avaulta Plus Anterior and Posterior BioSynthetic Support System, Charleston WV
October 2014 – Bard offers to settle 500 cases for $21 million, https://www.meshmedicaldevicenewsdesk.com/c-r-bard-may-settle-500-cases-for-21-million
October 2013- Rizzo v Bard, Case is dropped by the plaintiff and Bard wants $14,000 in court costs from her. Charleston WV
September 2013 – Vigil v CR Bard, case settled by Bard for undisclosed amount. Vigil had Avaulta Suburethral Plus. Atlantic City, NJ
August 2013 – Queen v CR Bard, case settled by Bard. She received the Avaulta Solo. Charleston, WV
July 2013 – Cisson v. CR Bard, $ 2 million for Cisson. Implanted with Avaulta Plus. Includes $175,000 in punitive damages. Charleston WV bellwether
July 2012- Scott v. CR Bard, $5.5 million for Scott,($3.6 million against company, remainder her physician), Implanted with Bard Avaulta Plus, Bakersfield California