As we have previously reported, Nuvaring, manufactured by Organon USA, was initially marketed in the United States in July 2002, after receiving FDA approval in late 2001. However, studies have shown that the ingredients contained in the birth control product NuvaRing may be linked to various forms of severe side-effects such as: heart attack, stroke, deep vein thrombosis (also known as DVT or blood clots), internal organ damage, myocardial infarction and pulmonary embolism.
In August 2008, the Judicial Panel on Multi-District Litigation granted a petition filed by Plaintiffs to consolidate all federal cases in the Eastern District of Missouri before Judge Rodney W. Sippel. Subsequently, the Supreme Court of New Jersey ordered that all pending and future New Jersey state court actions arising out of the use of the contraceptive NuvaRing were to be designated as a mass tort for centralized case management purposes. Judge Martinotti in Bergen County, New Jersey was assigned to coordinate the pretrial discovery.
Typically, granting MDL and mass tort treatment streamlines the pretrial discovery process, allowing the parties to avoid duplicative discovery and inconsistent rulings from different judges. Over the course of the last several months, the parties have worked together to select and prepare the initial cases to be tried in both the federal and state courts, which are expected to begin in early to mid 2012.