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disability 49 articles

Woman warns others about dangers of transvaginal mesh

“One night I emailed my sons and told them goodbye,” Teresa Sawyer told The Press. “I really thought I was going to die. I made them promise me that if something happened to me they would spread the word and tell other women not to get the mesh.” In February 2011, Teresa had surgery to implant Transvaginal Ethicon Mesh to treat stress urinary incontinence (SUI), a common condition in women in which urine unintentionally leaks after physical movement or activity (coughing, heavy lifting) that puts pressure on the bladder. It can be caused by childbirth, pelvic surgery, age and obesity. ... Read More

Serious birth defects linked to anti-seizure drug Depakote

Women who took the anti-epileptic drug Depakote during the first trimester of pregnancy are much more likely to deliver babies with serious birth defects affecting the brain, heart and limbs, according to a study in the New England Journal of Medicine. Depakote was first approved in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1983 as a treatment for epilepsy. In 1995, the FDA approved the use of Depakote to treat mania in bipolar patients. A year later, the drug’s indication was expanded to include the reduction of migraine headaches. In 2002, the FDA approved Depakote ER ... Read More

Study aims to find better, safer materials for hip implants

Researchers at the University of Limerick are gathering preliminary data on artificial joints in hopes of improving the lifespan of orthopaedic devices including artificial hips. About 750,000 surgeries to implant orthopaedic joints are performed each year in the United States, and that number is expected to climb to 4.5 million by 2030. Artificial hips are valuable devices for improving mobility and easing pain and discomfort for patients with hip joints damaged by osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, injury or other conditions. Typically, hip implants can last up to 20 years or more with about 13 percent failing prematurely. These traditional hip implants ... Read More

More victims of transvaginal mesh speak out

“I would bleed, hurt, go home hurting,” Janet Dotson told Click2Houston News. “It was extreme pain.” Dotson, like thousands of women, had surgery to repair a pelvic floor disorder, only to be left in worse shape than before surgery. Dotson wants answers, and now the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is searching for some. Pelvic floor disorders include pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI). Both conditions are common. POP occurs when the pelvic organs fall, or prolapse, causing symptoms such as pain and urinary incontinence. It is commonly caused by age, obesity and childbirth. SUI is the ... Read More

Metal hip implants can cause problems years after removal

Defective metal-on-metal hip replacement systems can cause patients debilitating problems for years after the implants have been replaced, according to research presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons this week. Surgeons have learned over the past decade that newer versions of hip implants, made with a metal ball that fits into a metal socket, have been failing at a higher rate than traditional hip implants made of ceramic or plastic parts. Typically, most hip implants fracture, loosen, or dislocate over a decade or two due to wear and tear. But many of these metal implants, ... Read More

FDA wants more data on safety of transvaginal mesh

Manufacturers of surgical mesh used to repair pelvic floor disorders including pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI) are being asked by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to conduct new studies on the safety of the products. The review is in response to mounting complaints associated with the transvaginal use of the mesh. Inserted through the vagina to shore up organs that have slumped from childbirth or obesity, the mesh offers an attractive non-invasive alternative to surgical repair. However, complaints show that the mesh often over time begins to erode into the vaginal wall. This causes pain, ... Read More

Body realignment could eliminate need for hip replacement surgery

More than a half a million hip and knee replacements are performed in the United States each year, and the numbers are growing. One doctor suggests many surgeries could have been avoided if peoples’ bodies were better aligned. Osteoarthritis is the most prevalent form of arthritis and now the No. 1 cause of pain and disability in the United States. Treatment is often hip or knee replacement surgery. But many of the prostheses used to repair damaged joints need to be replaced in 10 to 15 years. Some fail just months after implantation. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration is reviewing ... Read More

Safety of medical devices is questioned

What do artificial hips and surgical mesh have in common? They are both considered moderate-risk medical devices and can be approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) without rigorous testing through an expedited approval process known as 510(k). Many of these devices also have allegedly caused patients serious and sometimes permanent disability. This has led critics to question the safety of approving devices for use before they have been fully tested. For example, Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedic received FDA approval through the 510(k) process in 2006 for its ASR metal-on-metal hip replacement system. The device manufacturer was ... Read More

Disabled woman files lawsuit against artificial hip manufacturer

Narelle Lindrea waited nearly two years to recover from her hip replacement surgery, but the pain and disability never seemed to subside. She called her doctor’s office to ask why she was still hurting, and that’s when she learned her artificial hip had been recalled. “I was stunned and all I could say to her was, ‘It’s not just like a can of baked beans!’” Narelle is one of an estimated 93,000 people worldwide who received the DePuy Orthopaedics ASR-model hip replacement system. The device was built with metal-on-metal parts designed to be stronger and more durable than traditional ceramic ... Read More

Patients with metal artificial hips may have case against manufacturer

About a thousand lawsuits have been filed against Johnson & Johnson subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics over its defective ASR hip replacement system, which caused patients pain, disability and additional surgeries. However, the company refuses to compensate patients for anything more than their medical expenses. Soon after the DePuy metal-on-metal artificial hip hit the market in 2006, reports of premature failures began to pour in. The devices were loosening, dislocating and fracturing. Patients were also testing positive for metallosis, a blood poisoning caused by bits of metal from the device leaching into the bloodstream. By fall of 2010, DePuy had little choice ... Read More