Across the U.S., over 1 million people undergo surgery to repair hernias annually. The majority of hernia repairs are done by reinforcing the affected areas with a man-made synthetic mesh.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), 33% of patients report adverse events with hernia mesh. These complications, which often manifest as severe abdominal pain, bowel perforations, fever and nausea, can risk the health and even the life of the recipients.
Hernia mesh products have been linked to life-threatening infection. Mesh can adhere to the bowel and cause obstruction. Mesh patches can spontaneously migrate, perforating adjacent tissues and causing organ failure.
Over the past ten years, multiple types of hernia mesh have been recalled or pulled off the market.
Taking legal action for hernia mesh injuries
If you or a loved one suffered injuries because of a failed or defective hernia mesh, you may be entitled to bring a claim for damages against the manufacturer. Legal action can provide financial compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, loss of future earning potential, and even home modifications required for any disability.
You may also receive monetary damages for pain and suffering and loss of consortium if the injuries have deprived your spouse of comfort and normal relations. Finally, the court can award punitive damages if it is determined that the defendant showed reckless negligence.
Steps involved in bringing a hernia mesh lawsuit
An experienced product liability attorney will determine if you have a viable claim for damages against hernia mesh manufacturers. They will ask for and assist you in obtaining documentation of any injuries, such as doctor’s or hospital treatment.
The civil lawsuit, called a “complaint,” is filed in state or federal court. The suit will state how you were injured and the types of damages you are seeking.
Because of the large numbers of hernia mesh cases filed across the country, your lawsuit may be transferred into a multi-district litigation (MDL). MDLs are often created when a number of cases similar in fact against a common defendant have been filed. They are heard before a single federal judge to reduce duplicative discovery and preserve resources.
The next stage is pre-trial proceedings, including discovery, depositions (interviews with potential witnesses) and motions. These proceedings can be lengthy and complicated, especially in large mass torts involving medical devices.
Once trial dates are scheduled, both the defendants and the plaintiffs be provided the chance to present evidence and their side of the story. These trials may last two to three weeks, or more, and at their completion the jurors will render a judgement for the plaintiff or the defendant. Based on the jury’s decision, the court will then have the option of awarding legal damages to the claimant.
After the verdict is handed down, the plaintiff or the defendant can file post-trial motions or appeal the decision.
Explore your options for legal recourse
Showard Law Firm provides tenacious advocacy for those who have been harmed by hernia mesh products. To learn more about filing a hernia mesh lawsuit, we invite you to reach out for a confidential consultation today.
- FDA – Hernia Surgical Mesh, http://www.fda.gov/MedicalDevices/ProductsandMedicalProcedures/ImplantsandProsthetics/HerniaSurgicalMesh/default.htm
- ABC News Australia – Hernia Mesh Patient Says Chronic Pain Makes Life a Living Hell, https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-07-31/hernia-mesh-patient-says-chronic-pain-makes-life-a-living-hell/10051774