- MULTIDISTRICT LITIGATION (MDL):
April 15, 2022 – This is the first time in the 14-year history of various hernia mesh litigations that a jury has found for a plaintiff on a design defect theory. Antonio Milanesi and his wife, Alicia Morz De Milanesi, filed the case against C.R. Bard. They claimed that Antonio Milanesi, who had Bard’s Ventralex mesh implanted during a hernia repair in 2007, developed an infection and bowel abscess because of the mesh, requiring a second surgery in 2017.
The jury unanimously declared that the hernia patch manufactured by Bard—specifically, their Ventralex model—was defectively designed and caused harm.
After three days of deliberations and one hold-out juror, the jury returned with a verdict of $255,000.This verdict will help establish settlement values for the remainder of more than 17,000 cases in MDL.
- STATE COURT: Other cases pending in a Rhode Island state court also name the manufacturer Davol, another Becton Dickinson subsidiary, as a defendant.
On the other hand, court documents show that the manufacturers of hernia mesh devices have been marketing and promoting the products for unnecessary use, such as for the repair of smaller hernias that can be treated through laparoscopic surgery and stitches.
More than 16,000 cases have been consolidated before Chief U.S. District Judge Edmund Sargus in Columbus, in the third-largest pending MDL nationwide. Plaintiffs claim that the mesh products caused infections, pain, inflammation, and other problems.
A hernia is a protrusion of an organ through a weak spot in a muscle or connective tissue wall. Becton Dickinson maintains that its hernia repair mesh is safe.
Surgical mesh has been the subject of frequent litigation, with MDLs consolidated for similar claims over mesh products sold by Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon unit and Getinge’s Atrium Medical Corp, which last December said it had agreed to settle all claims for $66 million. The MDL against Ethicon remains pending, and no trials have yet taken place.