A Dallas jury split its decision in a product liability lawsuit filed over Ethicon’s TVT-O pelvic mesh yesterday, awarding $1.2 million in compensatory damages to plaintiff Linda Batiste.
The jury found that the TVT-O product, a surgical mesh designed to treat pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence in women, was defectively designed. But the jury declined to award punitive damages and ruled that the Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) subsidiary’s warnings about the risks of the TVT-O product were adequate.
"We believe the evidence showed Ethicon’s TVT-O pelvic mesh was properly designed and that Ethicon acted appropriately and responsibly in the research, development and marketing of the product," Ethicon communications director Matthew Johnson said in prepared remarks. "The jury’s verdict on design defect is disappointing, and we believe we have strong grounds for appeal."
"We empathize with all women suffering from SUI, which can be a serious and debilitating condition, and we are always concerned when a patient experiences adverse medical events," Johnson added. "TVT-O has been deemed safe and effective by regulators and practitioners alike, and it continues to be an important option for treating physicians to offer to women suffering from SUI."
Medical device companies including C.R. Bard (NYSE:BCR), Boston Scientific (NYSE:BSX), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) subsidiary Ethicon, Endo Health Solutions (NSDQ:ENDP), Cook Medical and Coloplast (CPH:COLO B) are facing a raft of lawsuits in federal and state courts in the U.S. over their respective pelvic mesh offerings.
Last week the European Commission asked a scientific advisory panel to look into the safety of surgical procedures to treat urogynecological conditions using the mesh products.