A Texas state judge yesterday reportedly halved the damages levied against Boston Scientific (NYSE:BSX) last month in a product liability lawsuit over its Obtryx pelvic mesh, rolling back $50 million in punitive damages.
Judge Ken Molberg of the Dallas County District Court invoked a Texas cap on damages, Law360 reported, cutting the $50 million to $11.2 million but leaving in place $23.5 million in actual damages.
A Dallas jury ruled in September that Boston Scientific’s Obtryx pelvic mesh device caused Martha Salazar’s injuries, awarding her $73.5 million in damages in the company’s 1st courtroom loss over the vaginal slings.
The Marlborough, Mass.-based medical device company is facing some 12,000 lawsuits in state and federal courts over its pelvic mesh products. Earlier this summer Boston Scientific won the first 2 of the lawsuits to go to trial in a Massachusetts state court. Salazar claimed that the Obtryx device, implanted in 2010 to treat her urinary incontinence, caused nerve damage, persistent pain and infection that her lawyer said prevents her from sitting comfortably and from normal walking or exercise.
The Dallas County jury found that the Obtryx sling was defectively designed and caused her injuries. Boston Scientific also failed to adequately warn patients and doctors of the risks of the device, the jury ruled. A finding of gross negligence set the jury up to levy $50 million in punitive damages, on top of a $23.5 million award for compensatory damages.
Boston Scientific said last month that it disagrees with the verdict and plans to appeal.