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Johnson & Johnson To Pay $41 Million To Injured Pelvic Mesh Patient

Ethicon, Inc., a medical devices unit of Johnson & Johnson, also makes an array of hernia mesh medical devices similar to their recalled pelvic mesh

Friday, February 15, 2019 - Johnson & Johnson's Ethicon medical devices unit has been forced by a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania jury to pay a $41 million award to a local woman who, according to The Penn Record "suffered permanent, scarring injuries to her genitalia after the installation of a pelvic mesh implant manufactured by Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon, Inc., and that mesh implant device was defective, and that defendants committed negligence in both its manufacture and in failing to warn of its dangers." The jury award was divided $15 million for compensatory and $25 million for punitive. One million was for the loss of consortium. Ethicon physiomesh hernia lawsuit claims continue to be filed against the makers of Ethicon physiomesh, Johnson and Johnson.

For years experts have compared Ethicon's failed mesh devices to their equally as defective Physiomesh hernia repair device. Most of Ethicon's pelvic meshes were recalled by the company in 2012 at the urging of the Food and Drug Administration. Ethicon voluntarily withdrew one of their hernia repair meshes, Phyiomesh Composite Hernia Mesh, from the market worldwide after a shockingly high number of complaints were made to European hernia complaint registries that Physiomesh patients required up to four times as many revision surgeries to remove or replace the failed mesh.

There are many similarities between the pelvic mesh and hernia mesh. There are differences as well. Pelvic mesh is used primarily for women having incontinence and leakage problems that can occur immediately after childbirth whereas hernia mesh is used mostly in males to support the abdominal wall after hernia repair surgery. The two medical devices are so similar that companies like Johnson & Johnson have products for both markets. Pelvic mesh is implanted into a woman's vaginal wall whereas hernia mesh is attached to a man's abdominal wall. An article published by the National Institute of Health compares the two medical devices and states that, first off, one would expect that hernia mesh would be stiffer and stronger than pelvic mesh because of the need to support the stronger abdominal wall, however, the opposite is true. The research sites a woman's pelvic mesh as being "up to two orders of magnitude stiffer in all tested configurations than ... hernia mesh."

Most hernia mesh devices such as Ethicon's Physiomesh line are made of ultralight material compared with the weight of other mesh devices in order to mimic the biomechanics of the abdominal wall. Unfortunately, such lightweight polypropylene material is incapable of enduring the body's attack on the petroleum-based polypropylene composition of the mesh and the mesh can quickly degrade and pull free from its moorings on the abdominal wall. Hernia mesh attorneys are currently interviewing patients that have been injured by their failed hernia mesh device. Mesh patients that have had to have a second, revision surgery may qualify to file a claim, like the one above, to be reimbursed for their medical expense, lost wages, and above all, pain and suffering caused by the negligence of Johnson & Johnson in failing to warn them of the risks.

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Lawyers for Ethicon Physiomesh Lawsuits

OnderLaw, 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. OnderLaw 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. OnderLaw 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.