Ella Ebaugh, 51, received a $57 million settlement after filing a Transvaginal Mesh lawsuit against Ethicon and Johnson & Johnson. The plaintiff from Pennsylvania sued the two giant corporations after being implanted with the device that caused her to suffer from long-term pain and discomfort. The jury ruled that the companies were liable for negligence and found them guilty of marketing a defective device.
This suit is just one among many filed against J&J, Ethicon and many other manufacturers who flooded the market with thousands of allegedly faulty devices. A large Transvaginal Mesh MDL was centralized back in 2012, when countless women claimed that the urogynecologic implants were responsible for many horrific injuries. Since then, more than 70,000 cases have been consolidated in the MDL No. 2327, although the Defendants already started settling down many of them for substantial amounts of money. Coloplast paid $16 million, for example, to settle 400 cases, and many trials ended with the plaintiffs’ victories, such as Deborah Barba’s $35 million reward.
During an interview with CBS News, Ebaugh explained that she was implanted with the mesh to repair her weakened pelvic floor muscles. After giving birth to five children, the woman suffered from urinary incontinence, and hoped that the device could provide her with a long-term solution to her problem. However, the synthetic surgical mesh started eroding in her urethra causing her excruciating pain and tremendous injuries. Despite having three surgeries to remove it, some shreds are still permanently embedded inside her body.
“My urethra is mangled and I will suffer for the rest of my life,” she explained, adding how the suffering is unbearable even when she’s just standing. The pain was so intolerable, that even during her daughter Jamie’s wedding she was “still sad and depressed.”
Ethicon, on the other hand, keeps claiming that its product had an extremely positive impact on thousands of other patients. The manufacturer claims that the use of this device to treat stress urinary incontinence is backed up by substantial clinical evidence and supported by regulatory agencies and medical experts. In a recent statement, the company plans to appeal the verdict, although last month a jury in New Jersey already required them to pay $20 million to a woman who was injured by a TVT-Secur vaginal mesh insert.
Article by Dr. Claudio Butticè, Pharm.D.