Update: Texas Couple Sues Ethicon Over Physiomesh Complications
June 23, 2017 – A married couple from Texas has filed a products liability lawsuit against J&J’s Ethicon division over injuries alleged from the company’s Physiomesh hernia patch. Plaintiff underwent hernia repair surgery with a Physiomesh patch in September 2013, and less than a year later ended up back in the hospital to treat complications from the hernia patch. The surgeon who operated on the patient allegedly found “numerous balled-up, rolled-up, and incorporated [Physio]mesh,” all of which had to be taken out “with difficulty using cautery and sharp dissection,” according to the lawsuit.
Studies Prompt Hernia Patch Withdrawal
In May 2016, Ethicon announced that it had withdrawn its Physiomesh Flexible Composite Mesh after an analysis of unpublished data from the Herniamed German Registry and Danish Hernia Database (DHDB) found higher than average recurrence and reoperation rates with the products. The company was unable to determine the exact cause of the problems but said “possible product characteristics, operative and patient factors” may have played a role.
What is Physiomesh?
Physiomesh is a hernia patch composed of flexible, non-absorbable polypropylene (plastic) that is designed to repair hernias and other fascial deficiencies. Polypropylene is the same material Ethicon uses to make its transvaginal mesh and bladder slings from, except that it contains an absorbable film coating made from slightly different compounds.
Hernia Mesh Repair
The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) reports that over 1 million hernia repairs are performed each year in the U.S., and that there has been a dramatic increase in these procedures over the past 30 years. Surgical mesh is used to strengthen the hernia repair and reduce the rate of recurrence. Most hernias are caused by pressure and a weakness or opening in a muscle or connective tissue.
Atrium C-Qur Hernia Mesh Recall
In July 2013, Atrium recalled its C-QUR hernia mesh implants because high humidity could cause the fish oil gel coating to peel off and stick to the inside of the package. Atrium C-Qur is a polypropylene mesh designed with an outer coating of a gel made from triglycerides and omega 3 fatty acids, called the O3FA layer. Patients who received the hernia patch have reported problems, complaining that the mesh gets stuck to their bowels and other parts of the body, increasing the risk of life-threatening complications.
Hernia Surgery Complications
According to the FDA, the most commonly reported complications associated with hernia mesh placement include:
- Hernia recurrence
- Scar-like tissue that sticks tissues together (adhesion)
- Intestinal blockage
- Organ perforation
Are Lawsuits Being Filed?
The first lawsuits alleging complications from the Physiomesh hernia patch started being prepared for trial in late September 2016. The first suit was filed by Matthew Huff just weeks before Ethicon withdrew Physiomesh in May 2016. According to the complaint, Huff developed severe abdominal pain, fever, nausea and chills shortly after receiving the hernia mesh. It was subsequently found that the device had become infected, causing two abdominal abscesses and intestinal fistula that required surgery to repair.
First Physiomesh Lawsuit Headed for Trial Jan. 2018
February 24, 2017 – Ethicon Inc. will defend itself in the first Physiomesh hernia patch lawsuit to go to trial next year in the Southern District of Illinois. Plaintiff in the case, Matthew Huff, claims he developed abdominal abscesses and intestinal fistulas after being implanted with Physiomesh in 2013.
Hernia Mesh Complications May Occur Years After Surgery, Study Finds
February 11, 2017 – Patients who undergo incisional hernia repair surgery with a mesh patch may have a lower risk for hernia recurrence, but serious problems can occur up to 5 years after the procedure, a new study has found. Complications included bowel obstruction, perforation, bleeding, pain, non-healing wounds, infections, fluid buildup and fistulas (organs fused together).
Do I Have a Hernia Mesh Patch Lawsuit?
The Class Action Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in hernia mesh patch lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new hernia recurrence and surgery cases in all 50 states.
Free Case Evaluation: Again, if you had hernia recurrence or surgery, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a lawsuit and we can help.