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Following multiple hernia repair procedures, which involved the use of Bard Ventrio and Bard Ventralex mesh, a Florida man has filed a lawsuits indicating that he has been left with significant pain and permanent injuries due to design defects in the popular hernia patch products.
The complaint (PDF) was filed by Richard Potter in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey on August 24, naming C.R. Bard and Davol, Inc. as defendants.
Potter first received a 13.8 cm by 17.8 cm Ventrio Mesh hernia patch in December 2009, during a surgery to repair multiple abdominal wall incarcerated hernias. However, recurring pain led to another surgery in August 2017 to address problems and a recurrent ventral incisional hernia where the Ventrio mesh patch was located.
At that time, Potter was implanted with a Ventralex ST Hernia Patch, which was 2.5 inches in diameter. However, in February of this year, he had to undergo yet another procedure due to recurring hernia, which involved removal of old mesh, and lysis of extensive intra-abdominal adhesions between the bowel and the mesh. His surgeon noted he had a “conglomeration of mesh and adhesions and bowel wall mangled together under the incision.”
“The procedure was very difficult to do,” the surgeon note. “It was basically separating bowel from mesh without causing major injuries.”
Despite the surgeon’s efforts, Potter indicates that he still experiences complications and chronic pain, and will likely require additional surgeries to repair the damage caused by the two hernia mesh patches.
According to allegations raised in the lawsuit, problems with Bard Ventrio and Ventralex hernia patch products actually cause or contribute to delayed wound healing, inflammation, foreign body response, rejection, infection and other complications. Although the manufacturers were aware of these potential risks, Potter indicates that it sold unreasonably dangerous products, with a solid, flat, relatively smooth and continuous surface, which inhibits the body’s ability to clear toxins.
The complaint joins a growing number of similar hernia patch lawsuits being pursued against Bard and other manufacturers over the use of polypropylene mesh in recent years, alleging that physicians and consumers were not adequately warned about the potential risks associated with the designs.
Given similar questions of fact and law raised in lawsuits brought throughout the federal court system, a panel of federal judges decided earlier this month to consolidate and centralize all cases against Bard before U.S. District Judge Edmund A. Sargus in the Southern District of Ohio for coordinated discovery and management, as part of an MDL or multidistrict litigation.
As lawyer continue to review and file cases in the coming months and years, it is ultimately expected that close to 10,000 lawsuits over hernia patch products may eventually be filed against various different companies by individuals who experienced problems in recent years.