Articles Posted in Product Liability

Last week I read speculation that the Roundup lawsuits might bankrupt Bayer because the cost of the settlements and verdicts they will have to pay will destroy the company.  Do I believe this?  No.  But, boy, it makes me more interested in every tidbit of information about the Roundup lawsuits pending in federal court.

court-of-appeals-199x300The judge overseeing all of the federal lawsuits involving the weed killer Roundup has granted Bayer’s request to have an upcoming trial split into two phases. This order prevents plaintiffs from introducing evidence that the company tried to influence regulators and manipulate the public into thinking that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, was safe. Roundup plaintiffs’ attorneys opposed Bayer’s proposals because they felt that their evidence proves Monsanto’s intent and misconduct.

Upcoming trial in February 2019

In July 2018, 3M settled a lawsuit with the federal government over its Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2), which it had sold to the US military. The lawsuit alleged that 3M knowingly supplied them with defective earplugs that may have resulted in the hearing loss and impairment of hundreds of thousands of military personnel.

I do not think this is going to be the last Combat Arms Earplug lawsuit that 3M is going to have to settle.

Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2

I’m writing to update readers on the Taxotere class action (MDL) lawsuits.

Taxotere has been one of the most widely used chemotherapy drugs since it was developed in the mid-1990s. Chemotherapy drugs like Taxotere work by attacking cancer cells within the body. Taxotere was originally developed and introduced by the New Jersey pharmaceutical company Adventis which is now Sanfoi-Adventis.

courthouse-300x200Following its approval by the FDA in 1996, a strong marketing push soon made Taxotere the chemo drug of choice for breast cancer treatment. Breast cancer is one of the most common types of all cancers with 300,000 women diagnosed annually. By 2009 the majority of breast cancer patients were being treated at some point with Taxotere, making it the most prescribed chemo agent in the U.S. In 2009, the year before the original patent on Taxotere expired, Sanfoi-Adventis reported $3 billion in revenues from its popular chemo drug.

As I have been saying, the Zostavax vaccine lawsuits are jumping with energy right now.  Lawyers want these cases which is why you see television commercials and Facebook and Google ads (and, yes, legal blog posts) from attorneys hustling to sign up victims.

These Zostavax lawsuits allege that the plaintiffs experienced severe complications, most notably shingles, from being administered it. Another lawsuit has recently been filed in the Pennsylvania courts, that allege even more side effects other than shingles or Bell’s palsy.

Georgia woman gets bronchitis from Zostavax

U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria will preside hold the first glyphosate cancer case in federal court on February 25, 2019. It will be the first of over 600 cases that are in federal litigation to go to trial.

First Federal Trial Involving Roundup

courthouse1-300x189This lawsuit involves a California man who claims that his long-term exposure to Roundup resulted in him receiving large B-cell non-Hodgkins lymphoma. His exposure stems from using Roundup to control poison oak and weed growth on his property since the 1980s. The complaint was filed in February 2016, about one year after his cancer diagnosis in 2015. The lawsuit alleges that the Monsanto, Roundup’s manufacturer, failed to exercise with care with respect to testing, manufacturing, and marketing it. It also alleges that Monsanto was being deceptive by claiming that Roundup was as safe as table salt.

In my mind, the biggest update in the Roundup lawsuit is that there expected settlement value keeps rising.  Here is what else is happening.

$289 Million Verdict Update

courthouse1-300x189During a hearing on October 24th after the whopping $289 million verdict against Monsanto,  a California trial judge issued a ruling reducing the verdict.  This case, as you probably know if you are reading this, involved a man who was diagnosed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma a couple years after using Roundup several times a day while on the job as a school groundskeeper.  The judge reduced what was previously a $289 million settlement to $49 million.    The judge reduced the punitive damages to match the compensatory damages.

In October 2018, settlements in the AbbVies AndroGel lawsuits FINALLY appear ready to resolve.  The drug company and plaintiffs lawyers are dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s on a settlement agreement that would resolve thousands of testosterone cases.

Lawsuits had been filed claiming that the makers of Androgel, AbbVie, failed to warn thousands of men about the potential side-effects of the drug. These side-effects include heart attacks, blood clots, stroke, and even sudden death in extraordinary cases. As the litigationandrogel-lawsuit wheels are starting to turn here, AbbVie is trying to gum them up with objections to slow down the process.  You could say everything is going according to plan….

Androgel Lawsuits

If you are reading this you probably already know this but let’s recap where were are. Currently, there are about 7,000 lawsuits against AbbVie percolating around the federal court system. The various suits allege that the makers of Androgel, AbbVie, neglected to warn thousands of men about the serious side effects of the “Low-T” treatment drug. This drug has certainly been a big hit, understandably so considering that it promises men physical enhancement to counteract the forces of aging. But thousands of lawsuits -allege that low-T drugs can lead to heart attack, stroke, pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis, or other injuries, prompting men across the U.S. to sue AbbVie and the other manufacturers for not being adequately warned of the risks.

That really is what this is about.  No one — at least not many people — are calling for a low-T recall.  The risk might outweigh the benefit for some although probably not many of us.  It is about giving patients and doctors a choice. Tell us what can happen and let us make the call.  They are giving this warning now.  They should have given it to us before.  That is what these lawsuits are about.

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  1. What is Zostavax?

Zostavax is a single shot vaccine that helps prevent herpes zoster, also known as the shingles. It is a weakened live form of the virus, meant to train the immune system to fight it off. Zostavax is primarily meant for individuals 50 years and older. Developed by the pharmaceutical company Merck & Company, the FDA approved it in 2006. It is a stronger version of Varivax, another shingles’ vaccine also developed by Merck.

  1. What are the shingles?

According to a new study recently published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, exposure to drugs found in the family fluoroquinolone increased the risk of aortic aneurysms and dissections. Fluoroquinolone drugs include Levaquin and Cipro.

What are fluoroquinolones?

aveloxFluoroquinolones are a family of antibacterial agents that are used primarily for respiratory and urinary tract infections. Drugs found in this family include Levaquin, Cipro, and Avelox.

Bayer announced today that after thousands of reports of injuries from women and repeated safety restrictions by regulators said Friday that it will stop selling the device in the U.S.

What is the deal with these medical devices and what is happening with the lawsuits in these cases?

The Essure Permanent Birth Control System was to provide women a safer, less involved (and painful) tubal ligation alternative. This medical device was triumphantly marketed as the “[only] sickwomanFDA-approved permanent form of birth control with a procedure that can be performed in an office setting without general anesthesia.” Unfortunately for the 750,000 women who have used this system since the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) approved it in 2002, both new scientific research and anecdotal evidence suggest that Essure has caused substantial injuries to thousands of patients, motivating calls among consumer advocates for the drug’s recall and spurring legal action.

How Essure Works and Why the System Appeals to Women

The Essure system consists of two flexible coils that are inserted into the Fallopian tubes in order to produce permanent sterilization. Both patients and doctors have liked Essure, at least conceptually, because the system offers a less-invasive solution than tubal ligation and other birth control surgeries, ostensibly with shorter healing time and fewer side effects. Premarket studies tracked women’s pregnancies before and after Essure implantation, leading Bayer to assert that the device is 99.83 percent effective at preventing pregnancy and that “mild to moderate pain” and “spotting” are the most common side effects.

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