Judge Goodwin Declares Mistrial in Transvaginal Mesh Case Against CR Bard
A product liability case against CR Bard’s transvaginal mesh products ended in mistrial on Wednesday, July 10th, due to a witness’s testimony.
US District Court Judge Joseph Goodwin – who presides over most of the multidistrict litigations (MDLs) against transvaginal mesh manufacturers – stopped the trial on its second day, when Lennox Hoyte, a gynecological expert from Tampa, FL, began discussing the product’s marketing.
Judge Goodwin ruled earlier that plaintiffs and their witnesses cannot mention transvaginal mesh devices’ marketing, or that CR Bard had withdrawn the transvaginal mesh products last year.
“I don’t think it’s a bell that can be unrung,” Goodwin said. “It would be very difficult for the jury to disregard.”
CR Bard is the manufacturer of Avaulta mesh, a transvaginal mesh device that faces 3,600 personal injury lawsuits.
“We’re disappointed the plaintiff’s witness blurted what he did and forced us to ask for a mistrial,” Bard lawyer Lori Cohen said.
Court documents show that a new jury trial is slated to begin on July 29th.
This particular case is one of four bellwether trials against Bard’s transvaginal mesh. Donna Cisson, 54 years old, suffered many unfortunately common problems associated with her transvaginal mesh implant, including pain, bleeding, and bladder spasms.
Bellwether Case Hinged on Transvaginal Mesh’s Unsafe Materials
At the end of June, Judge Goodwin unsealed records showing that CR Bard officials used a type of plastic in their transvaginal mesh devices that the plastics manufacturer specifically stated was unsafe for humans.
CR Bard’s Davol unit used a resin-based plastic that was made by a Chevron Phillips Chemical Company unit, which the supplier officially stated that the plastic should not be permanently implanted in people. Davol used the plastic to create transvaginal mesh and hernia repair products anyway.
“Do not use this Phillips Sumika Polypropylene Co. material in medical applications involving permanent implantation in the human body or permanent contact with internal body fluids or tissues,” according to the warning. It continued: “Do not use this Phillips Sumika Polypropylene Co. material in medical applications involving brief or temporary implantation in the human body or contact with internal body fluids or tissues unless the material has been provided directly from Phillips Sumika Polypropylene Co. under an agreement that expressly acknowledges the contemplated use.”
Suppliers such as Chevron Phillips “will likely not be interested in a medical application due to product-liability concerns,” Roger Darois, the Davol executive, now a Bard vice president, said in a March 2004 e-mail. “It is likely they do not know of our implant application. Please do not mention Davol’s name in any discussion with these manufacturers.”
In response, Scott Lowry, a Bard vice president, said in an email: “During the upcoming trial, Bard will provide all the relevant evidence for the jury to consider and render a decision, which will demonstrate that Bard acted appropriately in its acquisition of polypropylene resin. We believe that the Avaulta polypropylene mesh implant is a safe and effective treatment for pelvic organ prolapse when used in accordance with its instructions. To this day, after more than 50 years of use, polypropylene remains one of the most widely implanted and best materials for mesh products in medical applications in the human body.”
The Strom Law Firm Fights for Women in Transvaginal Mesh Personal Injury Cases
Transvaginal mesh kits were initially produced to help with pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. Several varieties of mesh kits exist, but transvaginal mesh specifically was supposed to produce less scarring and pain, because the procedure was less invasive. However, vaginal mesh slings can cause a host of problems, including organ perforation, infection, internal scarring, continued organ prolapsed, and bleeding. If you or a loved one has pelvic organ prolapse or stress urinary incontinence, have had a transvaginal mesh device implanted, and have since experienced detrimental complications, you may be entitled to compensation. The experienced lawyers at Strom Law, LLC can help. We offer free consultations, so please contact us today, and we can help get you on the road to recovery. 803.252.4800