Some Kentucky residents may be interested to know that C.R. Bard Inc. recently agreed to settle more than 500 lawsuits that claim the corporation's vaginal-mesh implants damaged women's bodies. Authorities reported that the agreement marks the first mass settlement reached over the New Jersey-based company's implants.

According to authorities, the deal means Bard will pay approximately $43,000 per lawsuit. Reportedly, a federal judge in West Virginia had ordered Bard to make trial preparations for the 500 suits.

In a July regulatory filing, Bard listed more than 12,400 lawsuits alleging their vaginal-mesh implants harmed women by causing constant discomfort, infection, bleeding, organ damage and pain during sexual intercourse. The lawsuits leave the company vulnerable to significant financial loses, according to authorities.

Endo International, based in Dublin, Ireland, recently agreed to pay $1.3 billion in settlements in response to over 30,000 suits filed over their transvaginal devices. In 2010, doctors implanted approximately 70,000 mesh devices in the U.S, reportedly. The mesh is intended to treat pelvic organ prolapse and incontinence, but the implants break down over time and erode into the vaginal wall, according to several claimants. On account of the thousands of women who have filed complaints, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has ordered Bard and other vaginal-mesh manufacturers to study the complication rates associated with the devices.

As this news illustrates, manufacturers of faulty medical equipment may be susceptible to civil action. People who suspect that they have been injured by defective medical equipment may seek the counsel and representation of a personal injury lawyer, who may review the circumstances of their grievance and advise whether a lawsuit appears tenable. If so, victims of defective medical products may be eligible to receive financial compensation for damages associated with their injuries.

Source: FDA, "Update on Serious Complications Associated with Transvaginal Placement of Surgical Mesh for Pelvic Organ Prolapse: FDA Safety Communication," July 13, 2011

Source: Bloomberg Business, "Bard Said to Pay $21 Million in First Big Vaginal-Mesh Accord", Jef Feeley and Phil Milford, October 08, 2014

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