Last month, an Atlantic County jury awarded a former nurse $3.35 million in compensatory damages for injuries she suffered from a vaginal mesh implant made by Johnson & Johnson. Three days following the verdict, the jury also awarded $7.76 million in punitive damages. The attorney for Johnson & Johnson admitted that her company “didn’t do as good a job as they could have” as she begged jurors not to award punitive damages. Meanwhile, Plaintiff’s counsel told jurors that Johnson & Johnson was a “big giant,” and jurors must send a “loud message” to punish the company for its conduct. The verdict is significant as it is one of the first of over 4,000 vaginal mesh cases to reach a jury.
The mesh implant is a synthetic material implanted and tied to ligaments or bone to lift and support internal organs. The implants were introduced over a decade ago and serve as an alternative to hysterectomy. Over hundreds of thousands of women received implants. Thousands of women have since complained of injuries including severe pain, infections and bleeding that often require follow-up surgeries. A spokesman for Johnson & Johnson said following the verdict, “While we are always concerned when a patient experiences medical conditions like those suffered by the plaintiff, all surgeries for pelvic organ prolapse present risks of complications.” It is expected that Johnson & Johnson will appeal the verdict.
If you or a loved one has experienced any injury from the use of a vaginal mesh implant, please contact Stark & Stark and speak to one of the Mass Tort attorneys, free of charge, who can help assess any claims that you might have against Johnson & Johnson.