Second Ethicon Pelvic Mesh Trial in MDL Set to Begin August 22

While Johnson & Johnson continues to face more than 17,500 Ethicon pelvic mesh lawsuits pending in the federal court system, the U.S. District Judge presiding over the consolidated litigation has scheduled a second bellwether trial to begin in August.  

All of the complaints involve similar allegations raised by women who received Ethicon Gynecare mesh for transvaginal repair or pelvic organ prolapse or female stress urinary incontinence (SUI).

The pelvic mesh and bladder sling products have been linked to serious and debilitating injuries where the mesh may erode through the vagina, cause infections or other complications.

Learn More About

Vaginal Mesh Lawsuits

Complications from transvaginal mesh may cause severe injuries.

Learn More About this Lawsuit SEE IF YOU QUALIFY FOR COMPENSATION

In the federal court system, the cases have been consolidated as part of an MDL, or multidistrict litigation, before U.S. District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin in the Southern District of West Virginia for coordinated discovery and pretrial management of the claims.

As part of centralized proceedings, a small group of cases were selected for early trial dates last year, known as “bellwether” cases since they are designed to be representative of other claims in the litigation and help the parties gauge how juries may respond to certain evidence and testimony that may be similar to what will be offered during other trials.

In February, the first in a series of three Ethicon bellwether trials began before Judge Goodwin, involving a lawsuit filed by Carolyn Lewis. However, that case ended in a defense verdict at the conclusion of the plaintiffs’ case, after Judge Goodwin found that a reasonable jury could not find that she had met her burden of proof.

According to a pretrial order (PDF) issued by Judge Goodwin on May 6, jury selection in the second Ethicon pelvic mesh trial is now set to begin on August 22, with trial set to commence on August 25. A lawsuit filed by Jo Huskey is scheduled for this trial date, with a backup case filed by Tonya Edwards set to proceed to trial on that date if the Huskey case has settled or is otherwise not ready.

Pelvic Mesh Lawsuits

In addition to cases involving Ethicon mesh, Judge Goodwin is also presiding over six other consolidated proceedings involving similar pelvic mesh products manufactured by American Medical Systems (AMS), Boston Scientific, C.R. Bard, Coloplast Corp, Cook Medical and Neomedic.

According to the latest case list (PDF) released by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) on May 15, there are currently more than 17,293 AMS mesh lawsuits, 10,800 Boston Scientific mesh lawsuits, 7,783 Bard Avaulta mesh lawsuits, 1,325 Coloplast mesh lawsuits, 184 Cook Medical mesh lawsuits and about 28 Neomedic Pelvic mesh lawsuits.

All of the lawsuits involve similar allegations that transvaginal mesh and bladder sling products were defective and unreasonably dangerous, causing women to experience complications where the mesh eroded through the vagina, caused infections and other injuries.

In addition to the Ethicon bellwether trials, a series of cases are being prepared for early trial dates involving pelvic mesh products manufactured by C.R. Bard, Boston Scientific and AMS.

In July 2013, a federal jury awarded $2 million in damages against Bard, including punitive damages. A second Bard case settled during the first day of trial for an undisclosed sum, and a third bellwether trial against Bard settled late last month, avoiding a trial that was set to begin this week.

In addition to the federal litigation, at least three other vaginal mesh cases have gone before state court juries, with each plaintiff being awarded more than a million dollars in damages. In July 2012, a California state court jury awarded $5.5 million in damages against C.R. Bard. A New Jersey state court jury awarded $11.1 million in damages against Ethicon in March 2013, and a Texas jury awarded $1.2 million in an Ethicon TVT-O mesh lawsuit last month.

Prior to the start of the AMS bellwether trials this year, it was announced earlier this month that Endo Health Solutions has agreed to pay $830 million to settle AMS mesh lawsuits filed by about 20,000 women. As a result, Judge Goodwin issued an order on May 6, canceling AMS bellwether trial dates set for June 2, July 7 and August 19.

Following the Ethicon trial for the Huskey or Edwards case on August 22, a third bellwether trial in that MDL date has been set for December 4, 2014.

If manufacturers do not reach pelvic mesh settlements to resolve a large portion of the litigation following these bellwether trials, it is expected that Judge Goodwin may begin remanding hundreds of cases back to U.S. District Courts throughout the country for individual trial dates.

Image Credit: |

4 Comments

  • daveOctober 13, 2014 at 2:20 am

    Please!!! We are broke!! We have 3 kids..j&j you guys are killing my wife and have affected my 3 kids for life!!! Please do the right thing and maybe we can start the rebuild of the last ten years and i prey and hope that my wife can at least try to enjoy the time she is hear with her family!!!#! Please!!!

  • michaelSeptember 3, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    there is no justice for these woman.judge wont let important info into court.?? justice were?more like court goin on is all about money.for them.not the victoms.evidence gone but nobody introuble for it.judges siding with companys that r so blatinly wrong.common sence.but they dont care.i could go on forever.this trial goin on is screwed up backwards.way to b for the people! yaaa right.just like o[Show More]there is no justice for these woman.judge wont let important info into court.?? justice were?more like court goin on is all about money.for them.not the victoms.evidence gone but nobody introuble for it.judges siding with companys that r so blatinly wrong.common sence.but they dont care.i could go on forever.this trial goin on is screwed up backwards.way to b for the people! yaaa right.just like our country.money money money and crookedness!

  • CrystalJuly 21, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    I believe Johnson&Johnson need to stop making a fool of themselves and start at least trying to settle out of court. I for one have a Great case abut Johnson&Johnson wants to make a total fool of themselves instead of trying to do the right thing. It's got to where I won't buy anything that's made by Johnson &Johnson.

  • dakeyMay 23, 2014 at 2:32 am

    FDA has allowed this company Johnson and Johnson Ethicon too make a fool of them. The FDA had no reason too turn their heads and say yes it ok to use these devices. This is wrong when it the government lawsuit , no doubt about it that check will get written before trail . But humans well we r not that important r we . FDA u owe us women all the under table money u took from Johnson and Johnson so[Show More]FDA has allowed this company Johnson and Johnson Ethicon too make a fool of them. The FDA had no reason too turn their heads and say yes it ok to use these devices. This is wrong when it the government lawsuit , no doubt about it that check will get written before trail . But humans well we r not that important r we . FDA u owe us women all the under table money u took from Johnson and Johnson so we can settle these cases. Sale some of your homes. Our lives r over these mesh products have and will never belong in a human body. There is not one woman that could say she didn't have problems with these products. You doctors and designer can not think for one minute that it's going to fit. I was healthy strong, active, I had a career as a mail carrier that's a active job, I would walk and lift all the time I told that to my doctor. He was told by Johndon and Johnson just use it and we'll worry about the future in the future of Hurting and destroying lives. Tell the truth these mesh products need a lot of redesign, and you can not be active if you agree to have one put in. Your design can not be made of mesh r u crazy. Make it right. STOP HURTING US , WE DONT DESERVE IT.WE JUST WANT TO BE NORMAL AGAIN. WHY IS THIS SO HARD ? JUST PAY WHAT YOU OWE NOW JOHNSON AND JOHNSON ETHICON GET IT OVER WITH. AND START OVER MAKE AND DISIGN A BETTER PRODUCT . YOU DONT WANT TO CLOSE DOWN. LOTS OF CORPORATION HAVE . HURRY TIME IS MONEY U KNOW .

Share Your Comments

I authorize the above comments be posted on this page*

Want your comments reviewed by a lawyer?

To have an attorney review your comments and contact you about a potential case, provide your contact information below. This will not be published.

NOTE: Providing information for review by an attorney does not form an attorney-client relationship.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

More Top Stories

Plaintiffs Oppose Phased Discovery Over Suboxone Tooth Decay Risks in MDL
Plaintiffs Oppose Phased Discovery Over Suboxone Tooth Decay Risks in MDL (Posted yesterday)

Plaintiffs say a federal judge should not waste time on a phased discovery plan requiring them to first prove Suboxone strips can cause tooth decay, saying the science is obvious and such a plan could delay resolution of hundreds of product liability lawsuits.