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Alabama Hernia Mesh Lawsuit: Get the Right Attorney

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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

Hernia Mesh Lawsuit
If you or someone you know has experienced complications from hernia mesh, Schmidt & Clark, LLP, is here to help. Recognized for our expertise in plaintiff representation, our primary goal is to ensure you receive the justice and compensation you’re entitled to.

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Hernia Mesh Lawsuits

Hernia mesh has been hailed as a game-changer in hernia repair surgery, designed to support weakened tissue and reduce hernia recurrence. However, complications from hernia mesh implanted are not uncommon and can include:

  • Infection
  • Pain
  • Recurrence
  • Mesh migration
  • Chronic abdominal pain

In more severe cases, chronic abdominal pain can occur as a symptom of mesh migration, even without other issues like abscesses or fistulae.

A rising tide of lawsuits has been spurred by severe injuries attributed to hernia mesh failures due to defective medical devices.

These lawsuits underscore the need for revision surgeries stemming from complications, which have been traced back to several hernia mesh products, including those manufactured by industry giants like Bard, Atrium Medical, and Ethicon.

The Role of Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) in Alabama Cases

Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) is a crucial procedural tool in federal litigation that consolidates similar individual cases to streamline the process and increase efficiency. In Alabama, as in other states, MDL plays a significant role when it comes to lawsuits involving hernia mesh complications.

By centralizing cases that share common factual questions, MDL allows for one judge to oversee pretrial proceedings, including discovery and motions.

This can lead to consistent court rulings and often encourages settlements. MDL is particularly useful in complex product liability cases like those involving hernia mesh, where numerous plaintiffs across the country might be alleging harm from the same product.

What Is Hernia Mesh?

Hernia mesh is a medical device used in hernia repair surgery. It is also known as hernia mesh patches, and it is designed to support weakened or damaged tissue, reducing the recurrence of a hernia.

However, research following ventral abdominal hernia repair shows varying risk of recurrence, with some cases not reporting recurrence within three years and others experiencing about a 10% recurrence rate after eight years.

This recurrence can be influenced by various factors, including a patient’s overall health and lifestyle, which may complicate attributing recurrence solely to mesh failure. Symptoms signaling a recurrence of hernia due to mesh failure can include:

  • Pain and discomfort
  • A sensation of stiffness in the abdomen
  • A noticeable bulge beneath the skin

Latest Hernia Mesh Lawsuit Updates

The landscape of hernia mesh lawsuits is continually changing, with settlements being reached and new cases being filed. Some notable examples include:

  • Bard Davol’s Kugel patch faced over 3,000 lawsuits in a Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) and concluded in 2017 with a $184 million settlement for 2,600 cases
  • Becton Dickinson, which faced a $4.8 million award in August 2022
  • C.R. Bard faced verdicts of $255,000 and $500,000 in April 2022 and a recent trial, respectively

Currently, MDLs against the following companies have no settlements announced as of February 2024:

  • Covidien
  • Atrium
  • Bard
  • Ethicon

Why Are People Filing Hernia Mesh Lawsuits?

People are filing hernia mesh lawsuits because recalled products known to have defects include the Atrium C-QUR patch, Ethicon Physiomesh, Bard Composix Kugel Hernia Patch, and others.

These products have been commonly associated with complications such as infections, pain, bowel perforation, obstruction, and synthetic mesh migration.

According to a 2021 study by the National Institute of Health, mechanical testing has demonstrated that hernia mesh products can lose their elasticity over time, which can cause complications like bowel obstruction [1].

Furthermore, mesh migration, possibly due to inadequate fixation or a reaction of the body, can result in trans-anatomical movement or the mesh dissolving into the adjacent tissue.

In lawsuits against hernia mesh manufacturers, these complications have been cited as evidence of defective product design, manufacturing errors, and insufficient labeling regarding potential risks.

Complications Named in the Lawsuits

As stated in a 2020 study by the National Center for Biotechnology and Information, the complications named in hernia mesh lawsuits are extensive and severe, including but not limited to [2]:

  • Adhesion
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Chronic pain
  • Hernia recurrence
  • Infection
  • Mesh shrinkage

Each of these complications can significantly impact an individual’s quality of life and may necessitate additional medical interventions.

The FDA blamed recalled hernia mesh for cases of bowel obstruction and perforation. Many of these recalled products are no longer on the market, but some are still available – Jessica D. Hess, Pharmaceutical Researcher at the Department of Genetics and Epigenetics

Who Qualifies To File a Hernia Mesh Lawsuit?

Individuals who have undergone hernia repair surgery using mesh from January 1, 2006, onwards, experienced serious injuries such as adhesions or hernia recurrence, and have undergone revision surgery due to these complications may qualify to file a hernia mesh lawsuit.

This eligibility extends to those who have suffered from other severe complications, including chronic pain, infection, bowel obstruction, or mesh migration, which have significantly impacted their well-being and daily activities.

Hernia Mesh Lawsuit Settlement Amounts in Alabama

There is no specific average settlement amount for hernia mesh lawsuits in Alabama, as these cases are handled on an individual basis and can vary widely depending on the severity of complications experienced by the plaintiff and the details of each case.

Settlement amounts in hernia mesh cases can range from tens of thousands to several million dollars, with factors such as the extent of injury, the cost of medical treatment, and the impact on quality of life influencing the final amount.

Some hernia mesh lawsuits have resulted in significant verdicts, such as a $500,000 verdict in October 2023 and a $4.8 million verdict in August 2022. In previous mass tort cases involving surgical mesh, such as the Kugel hernia mesh litigation, settlements resulted in an average of around $70,000 per claim. Still, individual settlements varied based on the severity of injuries, with some receiving over $900,000.

While specific average settlement amounts are difficult to determine since they vary greatly and can be confidential, some public payouts for hernia mesh complications have been disclosed, including a $4.8 million verdict for a Rhode Island man and a $255,000 award for an Ohio man in 2022.

Potential Compensation for Victims of Hernia Mesh Lawsuits in Alabama

Compensation for hernia mesh victims can include the cost of additional surgeries, hospital stays, medications, and rehabilitation. Economic damages such as lost wages, medical bills, and reduced earning capacity can also be part of the compensation.

Furthermore, victims may be entitled to compensation for non-economic losses like emotional distress or loss of quality of life.

Medical Expenses

Plaintiffs may receive compensation for all medical treatments related to their hernia mesh injuries, including costs for additional surgeries required due to mesh complications, hospitalization, and medication expenses.

The most effective treatment for hernia mesh infection, a common complication, is typically revision surgery combined with intravenous antibiotics to remove the infected mesh.

Emotional Distress

Compensation for emotional distress can be awarded to plaintiffs for the impact of hernia mesh complications on their mental health and quality of life. Plaintiffs must demonstrate that they have suffered damages, including emotional distress, directly attributable to the hernia mesh implant.

Lost Wages

Plaintiffs who are unable to work due to complications from hernia mesh can seek compensation for lost wages. Settlements for lost wages may include:

  • Compensation for the number of workdays missed due to injury
  • Consideration for the overall impact on the plaintiff’s ability to work
  • Compensation for any potential future earnings lost
  • Consideration for reduced earning capacity resulting from the hernia mesh injuries

Filing an Alabama Hernia Mesh Lawsuit

To file a hernia mesh lawsuit in Alabama, claimants must meet specific criteria and file within the statute of limitations. Plaintiffs looking to file a hernia mesh lawsuit should contact an experienced hernia mesh lawyer to evaluate their case and determine their eligibility, which can significantly increase their chances of achieving a settlement.

Types of Evidence To Present

When initiating a hernia mesh lawsuit, presenting medical records documenting the original surgery, subsequent complications, and any revision surgeries is vital.

These records can provide concrete evidence of the complications experienced as a result of the hernia mesh implant.

Statutes of Limitations

In Alabama, the statute of limitations for hernia mesh lawsuits is two years starting from when the injury is or should have been discovered.

If you believe you have a valid claim, swift action is crucial, as failing to file within the statute of limitations can preclude the opportunity to seek justice through the legal system.

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Have you or a loved one suffered severe pain or injury from a defective medical device?

Get Your Free Consultation From Alabama Hernia Mesh Lawyers

Schmidt & Clark, LLP are here to support you during tough times. If you or a loved one has suffered complications from hernia mesh complications, reach out to us.

Our legal team has extensive experience handling defective medical device cases and can provide valuable insight into your potential claim. We’ll help you understand your rights and determine if you’re eligible for a hernia mesh lawsuit.

Consultations are free, and there are no fees unless we win your case. Contact us for a comprehensive case evaluation on hernia mesh issues.

Reference:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8684331/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7378717/

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