Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals is hoping to ditch some of the 450 lawsuits it faces over inadequate warnings for possible complications with its Mirena intrauterine device on the grounds that the cases have exceeded the statute of limitations. The Mirena IUD is a flexible, T-shaped device that is inserted into the cervix to prevent pregnancy for up to five years.
U.S. District Judge Cathy Seibel asked attorneys on both sides of the issue to select a dozen cases to serve as an initial disposition pool with a goal of going to trial. The lawsuits allege that the Mirena IUD can migrate from its intended location in the cervix, tear the uterine wall and puncture organs, requiring surgical removal. Bayer claims the warnings on its safety label are adequate.
In its motion to dismiss some of the lawsuits, Bayer attorneys used a claim by plaintiff Amanda Truitt as an example. Truitt suffered from nausea and vomiting after her Mirena IUD dislodged from her uterus and caused ovarian cysts. She underwent surgery in 2011 to remove the device.
However, Truitt did not file a lawsuit until more than two years later. Bayer says claims for products liability and personal injury are barred in both Texas and Indiana – the two states where she filed her case – after two years.
Attorneys for lead plaintiffs say that Bayer’s motion on a single case should not determine the outcome of the others, as each state has different statutes of limitations.
Source: The National Law Journal