Vaginal Mesh Claim of Carolyn Jones vs. C.R. Bard Up for Trial in Early 2014

December 2, 2013

After three postponements, the vaginal mesh lawsuit filed by Carolyn Jones against C.R. Bard may finally be heard on January 10, 2014. This is actually the fourth and final bellwether case in the multidistrict litigation (MDL) involving this mesh manufacturer scheduled by Judge Joseph Goodwin of the US District Court of West Virginia.

Carolyn Jones, of Tippah County, Mississippi, was implanted on August 26, 2008 with Bard’s Avaulta Synthetic Support System for the repair of her pelvic organ prolapse (POP). She also underwent a sling procedure uisng Bard’s Align Urethral Support System for the treatment of her stress urinary incontinence (SUI).

After only a few months, she started experiencing severe complications associated with the mesh devices implanted during her prolapse repair and sling procedure. These have resulted to pain and suffering, physical disability, and substantial deformity, which have compelled her to file a vaginal mesh lawsuit on December 07, 2010 against C.R. Bard.

In her complaint, she alleged that C.R. Bard was negligent in disclosing the dangers of the Avaulta device to the medical community and the general public. Miss Jones is seeking compensatory and punitive damages for the serious injuries she sustained due to these defective medical devices.

Read More: Final C. R. Bard Bellwether Vaginal Mesh Trial Postponed Until January

Women Undergoing Hysterectomy At Risk of SUI, Study Reports

November 22, 2013

Hysterectomy or the surgical removal of the uterus may not only cause vaginal vault prolapse but may also increase the risk of urinary incontinence, according to a study which was published in the medical journal The Lancet. Researchers from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden reported that women who had hysterectomy are more than twice as likely to require an operation for urinary incontinence in the future.

Hysterectomy is the second most common surgical procedure in the United State with over 600,000 operations performed annually, next only to a caesarian section operation. This surgical procedure may be performed for treating medical conditions such as uterine fibroids, irregular heavy menstrual bleeding, and to repair a prolapse of the uterus. On the other hand, with over 18 million women believed to be affected, urinary incontinence is the most common pelvic floor disorder.

Dr. Daniel Altman and his team of researchers, in undertaking this study, gathered data on 644,766 Swedish women using a nationwide hospital discharge registry for the years 1973 to 2003. A total of 165,260 women were determined to have had hysterectomies, while the remaining 479,506 respondents who were of the same age bracket did not have any surgical procedures to remove the uterus.

It was learned after analyzing the data that women who had hysterectomies were 2.4 times more likely to have surgeries for urinary incontinence, regardless of the type of hysterectomy operation performed. This risk was found to be highest within five years from time the uterus was removed although the risk remains during the patient’s lifetime. The risk of getting incontinence, it was further found, was higher if the hysterectomy was done before their menopause or after giving births.

The results of this study may have validated the connection between urinary incontinence and hysterectomy which many medical specialists have long believed. This confirmation may have significant implications to both the patient and the attending physician.

The risks involved in such a procedure may be made known to a woman before she makes a final decision on having a hysterectomy. On the part of the healthcare provider, knowledge of this possible consequence may prompt her to assess the circumstances more carefully before suggesting this procedure.

In view of the controversy surrounding vaginal sling procedures, a treatment method for SUI favored by many urogynecologic surgeons, these findings become even more significant. Severe complications experienced by thousands of patients have reportedly resulted from the use of these surgical mesh devices. Women who were recommended to have sling procedures together with their hysterectomies are among those who have complained of severe complications.

Thousands of patients who were implanted with these mesh devices have allegedly sustained serious injuries causing pain and suffering, permanent disability, and considerable physical deformity. These have compelled patients to take legal actions such as filing of vaginal mesh lawsuits against different mesh manufacturers.