Pelvic Mesh Settlements

In 2020, California ordered Johnson & Johnson’s company Ethicon, a leading manufacturer of pelvic mesh products, to pay almost $344 million in settlements.[1] The state determined the company misled doctors and patients by intentionally hiding the side effects of pelvic mesh surgery. As of 2024, Ethicon and other companies have paid out around $8 billion in pelvic mesh lawsuit settlements.[2]

Attorneys from the pelvic mesh multidistrict litigation (MDL) leadership committee have asked attorneys to set aside 5% of the common benefit fees for legal fees and expenses.[3] This request is controversial.

If a pelvic mesh operation injured you, the severity of your injuries may prevent you from being able to work. Not only could you face mounting medical expenses, but you may also have to endure long wait times as their court cases settle. Pre-settlement funding can help individuals involved in a pelvic mesh lawsuit cover their costs while waiting for the court process to complete.

Average Settlement for Pelvic Mesh Lawsuit

The contested common benefit fees have turned up in various court cases.[4] Proponents of these fees argue they are intended to help eliminate a free rider problem. If a plaintiff’s attorney used MDL to reach a settlement, they owe a percentage of that settlement to the MDL council.[4]

Estimates indicate that the average settlement for pelvic mesh lawsuit cases is anywhere from $40,000 to $450,000.[8] Meanwhile, some cases that reached a jury received millions for similar claims. In the case of defective medical device lawsuits, a 5% fee can significantly lower the payout.[8]

Did the Leadership Team Take on Too Many Pelvic Mesh Lawsuit Cases?

Critics of the MDL leadership team allege they took on more pelvic mesh lawsuit cases than they could manage.[5] Critics claim this led to the team accepting discounted settlements. The leadership team may make more money from the sheer volume of claims, but the low payouts negatively affect the plaintiffs who may face a lifetime of health issues following their pelvic mesh surgery.[5]

Law firms are still accepting new claims, and cases that qualify for funding may be able to access support in the form of pre-settlement funds.

Complications from Pelvic Mesh Implants

Some women were recommended pelvic mesh implants to alleviate discomfort after childbirth, while other women received these implants to reduce stress urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, and other age-related issues.[9]

Unfortunately, these implants often had unexpected and severe side effects. Some women experienced mesh erosion, causing pain, infection, and nerve damage.[6] Others required multiple surgical procedures to adjust or remove their pelvic mesh implants. The FDA has received thousands of adverse event reports relating to these implants. It has taken steps to increase its oversight, stating in 2021 that “these devices do not have a favorable benefit-risk profile.” [6]

Manufacturer Claims of Pelvic Mesh Implants Complication Rates

Lawsuits relating to pelvic mesh implants show a high rate of complications. One study reports a total of 3,979 complications with vaginal mesh implants between 2005 and 2010.[7] Plaintiffs believe manufacturers knew these risks and did not communicate them to the medical professionals or their patients.[7]

Pelvic Mesh Manufacturers Blame Surgical Techniques

Pelvic mesh manufacturers have responded to these claims, suggesting the fault lies with the surgeons.[10] In their view, faulty surgical techniques increase the likelihood of poor outcomes with pelvic mesh implants. However, many of the side effects experienced by patients occur more than a month after the surgery. Some reports even show a decline 10 years later.[10] This delay in symptoms makes it likely the issue is with the implant itself.

Plaintiffs with pelvic mesh implants claim the manufacturers of the pelvic mesh deliberately misled the FDA and the medical community regarding the safety and effectiveness of pelvic mesh products.

Helping Clients Who Suffered Pelvic Mesh Injury

USClaims can help fund your medical expenses related to pelvic mesh problems in anticipation of a court judgment or settlement in a pelvic mesh lawsuit.

We offer pre-settlement funding, which means that if your case qualifies for funding, USClaims will purchase a portion of the proceeds of the anticipated court judgment or settlement in exchange for some upfront cash. USClaims only gets paid if a case succeeds or reaches settlement! Apply now or call us today at 1-877-USCLAIMS to learn how pre-settlement funding works. You can also check out our settlement funding FAQs.

The availability of pre-settlement funding varies by state. Contact USClaims for more information.

Sources

  1. “Attorney General Becerra Secures Nearly $344 Million Judgment Against.” State of California – Department of Justice – Office of the Attorney General, 5 Feb. 2021, oag.ca.gov/news/press-releases/attorney-general-becerra-secures-nearly-344-million-judgment-against-johnson.
  2. Bcpa, Michelle Llamas, et al. “Transvaginal Mesh Lawsuit Settlements and Verdicts 2024.” Drugwatch.com, 6 June 2024, www.drugwatch.com/transvaginal-mesh/verdict-settlement.
  3. “Perceptions of Justice in Multidistrict Litigation: Voices From the Crowd.” Electronic Copy, 2021, fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/legaldocs/lgpdwmymevo/SSRN-id3900527%20(1).pdf.
  4. Frankel, Alison. “MDL Judges Have Power to Order Common Benefit Fees When Unfiled Cases Settle – GM Judge.” Reuters, 10 Aug. 2020, www.reuters.com/article/idUSKCN2562IQ.
  5. Engstrom, Nora Freeman, et al. “Plaintiffs and Attorneys in Multidistrict Litigation: Strengths, Deficits, And Paths Forward.” Stanford Law School, by Deborah L. Rhode Center on the Legal Profession et al., May 2023, p. 1. law.stanford.edu/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Report-Plaintiffs-and-Attorneys-in-MDL-SLS-Convening-May-2022-vF-1.pdf.
  6. Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “FDA’s Activities: Urogynecologic Surgical Mesh.” U.S. Food And Drug Administration, 11 Apr. 2024, www.fda.gov/medical-devices/urogynecologic-surgical-mesh-implants/fdas-activities-urogynecologic-surgical-mesh.
  7. Dibb, Bridget, et al. “When Things Go Wrong: Experiences of Vaginal Mesh Complications.” International Urogynecology Journal, vol. 34, no. 7, Jan. 2023, pp. 1575–81. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00192-022-05422-z.
  8. “Transvaginal Mesh Verdicts and Settlements against Manufacturers.” Drugwatch.com, www.drugwatch.com/transvaginal-mesh/verdict-settlement/.
  9. Dibb, Bridget, et al. “When Things Go Wrong: Experiences of Vaginal Mesh Complications.” International Urogynecology Journal, vol. 34, no. 7, 6 Jan. 2023, pp. 1575–1581, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10287809/, https://doi.org/10.1007/s00192-022-05422-z.
  10. “New Breed of Investor Profits by Financing Surgeries for Desperate Women Patients.” Reuters, www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-litigation-mesh/.

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