Hernia mesh is a material used to repair damage to the muscle wall, usually in the abdominal area. A hernia occurs when the muscle wall develops, weakens and tears which allows the internal organs to protrude. Injury, obesity, constipation, too much exercise, persistent cough, or previous surgery can all contribute to the possibility of hernia. Mesh used during surgery is placed over the herniated tissue and provides strength to the abdominal wall and holds internal organs in place.
Why are People Suing the Manufacturers of these Products?
Over 100,000 hernia surgeries occur each year. Many different mesh products exist, and many patients have the surgery and encounter minimal negative side effects. There appear to be particular types of mesh products that seem to cause more problems than others.
Many mesh products are constructed of processed animal tissue. These products are made to be absorbed by the body over time, and usually don’t present negative side effects, however, once absorbed the same problems which caused the original hernia may manifest themselves and additional hernia surgeries may be required.
Other mesh products are made of synthetics, such as polypropylene. When coming into contact with internal organs, polypropylene mesh has many negative side effects. Manufacturers have begun to coat the mesh with a material to insulate the body from the plastic mesh. These products are called composite mesh, and it is these products which seem to result in the most adverse events.
Due to adverse and painful side effects, patients who have been treated by use of hernia mesh products are suing the manufacturers since they were not warned of the potential for complications before the use of the product.
What are the Negative Side Effects of Mesh Surgery?
Many complications have manifested themselves after thousands of surgeries were performed using mesh products. In some cases, these conditions may not present themselves until years after the surgery occurs. In some cases, the mesh doesn’t seat properly or may become detached from the abdominal wall and may migrate within the abdomen causing damage to internal organs. Some of the side effects patients have experienced include:
- Recurrence of hernia
- Fistula – organs connecting abnormally
- Scar tissue forming adhesions
- Migration of mesh
- Nerve damage
- Sexual complications
- Obstruction of the large or small intestine
- Bowel perforation
How Many Cases are there Currently for this Product?
Many mesh products have been withdrawn from the market, and people are suing the manufacturers for a failure to warn both doctors and patients of the potential side effects occurring. Physiomesh, a product manufactured by Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon subsidiary, is one of these recalled products. At this point, almost 500 lawsuits against Ethicon exist at the federal level, and cases have been consolidated into a Multi-District Litigation (MDL). Other suits for this product may be working their way through various state courts.
Atrium is another mesh manufacturer with a product called C-Qur mesh. These cases have also been consolidated into a different MDL than the Physiomesh cases. About 30 of these cases exist at the federal level.
What is the Basis of the Lawsuits?
Manufacturers are required to provide safe products to the marketplace, and also are responsible to share known safety issues with their customers. Pharmaceutical manufacturers seem to have an aversion to being forthcoming regarding adverse side effects of their products. When a product injures enough people, the lawsuits begin to mount and, at some point, the manufacturer either has to pay significant punitive damages, or may be exonerated if the case can’t be proven.
In the case of hernia mesh, manufacturers knew, or should have known prior to marketing these products, that there were significant potentials for serious adverse events, and should have updated sales literature accordingly.
Richard Harris Law Firm is Nevada’s Hernia Mesh Lawyer
If you have had hernia surgery that made use of a hernia mesh product and have experienced any of the symptoms outlined above, you may qualify for compensation. We are investigating lawsuits throughout the state, where Nevada citizens have been injured or suffered pain as a result of a hernia mesh product. Call our office today to discuss your potential case at (702) 444-4444.