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Virginia 193 articles

Florida jury awards $26.7 million to four women injured by transvaginal mesh

bladder sling

A Florida federal jury determined that medical device maker Boston Scientific should pay $26.7 million to four women who claim they were injured by the company’s transvaginal mesh. The jury found Boston Scientific negligent in manufacturing the Pinnacle Pelvic Floor Repair Kit, a type of surgical mesh that is used to treat common pelvic floor disorders such as pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. Jurors found that the device was defective at the time of its sale because it didn’t meet reasonable expectations of its intended users, and that the benefits of the device were overshadowed by the risks, ... Read More

Plaintiffs in transvaginal mesh lawsuit fight to use medical expert

bladder sling

Plaintiffs in a transvaginal mesh multidistrict litigation (MDL) told a West Virginia federal judge that an expert who testified for C.R. Bard Inc., in previous litigation should not be barred from testifying for plaintiffs since he never signed a confidentially agreement from the medical device maker. Neeraj Kohli is a medical doctor that C.R. Bard used as an expert in a transvaginal mesh lawsuit in California state court in 2010. He was scheduled to testify in two bellwether cases as part of the MDL, but the company ended the arrangement after discovering an article Kohli had published in a medical ... Read More

Tampons may help doctors detect ovarian cancer

baby powder contains talc

Tampons could one day be used as a diagnostic tool for ovarian cancer, according to researchers fro the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Researchers studied tampons that had been placed in the vaginas of ovarian cancer patients and found tumor DNA in cells trapped within the tampon fibers. “In about 60 percent of the patients who had their (fallopian) tubes still intact, we were able to pick up tumor cells, or essentially tumor DNA, in the vaginal tract,” said Dr. Charles Landen, associate professor of gynecologic oncology. Having fallopian tubes still intact would be key for the study since the ... Read More

Verdict in whistleblower guardrail case could be breakthrough for False Claims Act suit

guard-rail - KCPQ-TV image

Just because the U.S. government fails to intervene in a False Claims Act case doesn’t mean the lawsuit can’t prevail in court, a fact demonstrated by the $175-million verdict a Texas federal jury handed down this week in a whistleblower case against the nation’s leading guardrail manufacturer. According to the Wall Street Journal, the verdict in whistleblower Josh Harman’s case against Trinity Industries Inc. should serve as a “False Claims Act wake-up call” to companies that contract with or in other ways do business with federal agencies and programs, signaling that even false claims lawsuits without the government’s backing can ... Read More

Texas guardrail maker loses whistleblower case, jury orders company to pay $175 million

guard-rail - KCPQ-TV image

A Texas guardrail manufacturer accused by a whistleblower of defrauding the federal government has been ordered to pay $175 million by a federal jury. Dallas-based Trinity industries for years has manufactured guardrail systems for the Federal Highway Administration (FHA), which uses them on highways in most every state. In 2012, whistleblower Josh Harman, a Virginia guardrail installer and safety advocate, sued Trinity under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act, accusing the company of secretly changing the design of its government-approved ET-Plus guardrail system. According to Mr. Harman, the redesigned ET-Plus guardrails cost less for Trinity to produce ... Read More

Jury awards $73 million to plaintiff in transvaginal mesh lawsuit

2012-TVM-serious-complications

A woman injured by transvaginal mesh intended to treat urinary incontinence has received the largest jury award of any plaintiff to date in a transvaginal mesh lawsuit. Boston Scientific was ordered by a West Virginia jury to pay plaintiff Martha Salazar $73 million for injuries she received from the company’s bladder sling device. Salazar, 42, claims she was a healthy woman with a full-time job when she underwent surgery to repair a condition causing urinary incontinence. But she says the transvaginal mesh that was implanted in her – the Obtryx mesh – was defective, causing severe chronic pain. The $73 million ... Read More

Whistleblower case against guardrail manufacturer to be re-tried this week

osha whistle

A whistleblower who claims a leading guardrail manufacturer secretly changed the design of its guardrail systems, making them extremely dangerous and in some cases deadly, will have his case heard again this week after the first trial ended in a mistrial. Joshua Harmon, a safety advocate from Virginia, is suing Trinity Industries Inc. under the qui tam provisions of the federal False Claims Act, which allow private individuals to sue on behalf of the U.S. government. Mr. Harmon alleges that Trinity secretly changed the design of its widely used ET guardrail system to save money, shortening the end terminals. But ... Read More

Takeda to pay $2 million in latest Actos bladder cancer trial

Actos (pioglitazone) Type 2 diabetes medication

A Philadelphia jury deliberated more than five hours before ordering Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., was ordered to pay more than $2 million to a woman who claimed the company’s type 2 diabetes drug Actos caused her to develop bladder cancer. The verdict is the latest of thousands involving Actos bladder cancer claims to go to trial. Plaintiff Frances Wisniewski argued that Japan-based Takeda knew of the bladder cancer risks associated with Actos but failed to adequately warn doctors or patients of the risk. Wisniewski is the seventh Actos user to go to trial. A previous case resulted in a $9 billion ... Read More

Companies involved in West Virginia chemical spill that contaminated drinking water face numerous lawsuits

drinking water

In January of 2014, 300,000 West Virginia residents were left without water for more than a week due to a chemical spill in the Elk River, just upstream from the Kanawha County municipal water intake in Charleston, W. Va. At 6 p.m. on the day of the spill, the Office of the Governor of West Virginia issued a “Do Not Use” order on the residents’ tap water. The spill originated from Freedom Industries, a Charleston-based manufacturer of specialty chemicals used in the mining, steel, and cements industries. Soon after the spill was discovered, a pungent odor permeated the cities near the river. ... Read More

Another transvaginal mesh trial is underway in West Virginia

bladder sling

Another trial is underway in Charleston, W.Va., alleging defectively designed transvaginal mesh products caused serious injuries. The federal lawsuit was filed by Jo Huskey and her husband Allen against Ethicon Inc. and Johnson & Johnson. Transvaginal mesh, also referred to as vaginal mesh or bladder sling, is a type of surgical mesh used to treat pelvic floor disorders including pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. It is inserted through the vagina to hold up organs that have prolapsed out of place, putting pressure in the pelvic cavity and causing symptoms such as pain, discomfort and incontinence. The mesh has ... Read More