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Facts Pertaining to Hernias and the Ethicon Physiomesh Hernia Repair Composite Mesh

Doctors can no longer use Ethicon Physiomesh to repair hernias because of the company's market withdrawal of the product

Monday, April 23, 2018 -

What is a hernia?

A hernia occurs when muscle tissue in the stomach, groin, umbilical cord, or around a surgical incision weakens allowing fatty tissue to squeeze through. The vast majority, over 95%, of hernias are inguinal hernias. In an inguinal hernia, the intestine protrudes through the abdominal wall. Most inguinal hernias occur in men and most are due to straining the stomach muscles. The FDA reports, "Hernia repairs are common-more than one million hernia repairs are performed each year in the U.S. Approximately 800,000 are to repair inguinal hernias ."

What is Physiomesh?

Physiomesh is a type of composite screen and placed over the spot where a hernia is occurring. The materials composing the mesh are designed to keep the mesh in place with the development and healing of supporting tissue. According to the Physiomesh website Physiomesh is, "composed of nonabsorbable, macroporous polypropylene mesh laminated between two undyed polyglecaprone-25 films. An undyed polydioxanone film provides the bond between the polyglecaprone-25 film and polypropylene mesh."

There are two surgical methods to repair inguinal hernias, laparoscopic surgery, and open repair. Laparoscopic surgery is non-invasive as a surgeon only makes an incision big enough to allow specialized surgical equipment into the opening and looks into a camera inserted into the abdominal cavity to repair a hernia. In an open repair, a surgeon makes a full incision and repairs a hernia with traditional, invasive and more dangerous surgery. Either procedure can use surgical mesh to do the repair.

The most common complications that occur in Physiomesh hernia patients are a pain, infection and the recurrence of a hernia that necessitated a second revision surgery to repair or remove the device. Other adverse reports include excessive scar tissue buildup, bleeding, blockage of the small intestine, fluid building up, and the Physiomesh device failing to adhere, migrating and perforating nearby tissue or organs. Patients suffering from pain, infection and other complications have caused the Ethicon Physiomesh hernia repair device to be taken off of the market as of May of 2016. The removal of the device from the market constitutes a "Market Withdrawal" and not an official FDA recall. The primary difference in the two is in the scope of medical professionals that are required to be advised of the product no longer being made available. Market Withdrawals are less strict than an official recall. Nonetheless, Physiomesh patients suffering from the adverse effects of the device and forced to undergo revision surgery are suing Ethicon's parent company, Johnson & Johnson for their damages. Currently, there are around 700 Physiomesh cases in progress nationwide.

About Ethicon, Inc.

Pharmaceutical and medical device maker Johnson & Johnson purchased Ethicon, Inc. in 1949 and is a subsidiary of the company. Ethicon was founded in 1847 and controls roughly 80% of the surgical sutures market in 52 countries worldwide. Ethicon employs around 11,000 people and has sales of over $5 billion per year. Ethicon deems Physiomesh dangers to outweigh its potential benefits. Unsafe for general use, Ethicon hernia mesh is no longer being sold. It is recommended to contact Ethicon Physiomesh attorneys if you or a loved one have been injured due to complications and side effects from hernia surgery using Ethicon Physiomesh procedures.

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Lawyers for Ethicon Physiomesh Lawsuits

Onder, Shelton, O'Leary & Peterson, LLC is a St. Louis personal injury law firm handling serious injury and death claims across the country. Its mission is the pursuit of justice, no matter how complex the case or strenuous the effort. Onder, Shelton, O'Leary & Peterson has represented clients throughout the United States in pharmaceutical and medical device litigation such as Pradaxa, Lexapro and Yasmin/Yaz, where the firm's attorneys held significant leadership roles in the litigation, as well as Actos, DePuy, Risperdal and others. The Onder Law Firm has won more than $300 million in four talcum powder ovarian cancer lawsuits in St. Louis. Law firms throughout the nation often seek its experience and expertise on complex litigation.