Articles Posted in Product Liability

Xeljanz is a popular medication that is prescribed to treat patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and ulcerative colitis. Xeljanz is the brand name for the drug Tofacitinib, which works by suppressing the patient’s immune system to help reduce inflammation in the body. Since its original release in 2012, this medication has exploded in popularity because of its placement of ads on television and in magazines.

Manufactured by pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, the company has raked in over a billion dollars in profit off the hundreds of thousands of people use the drug. In February 2019, Pfizer was hit with an FDA safety warning that linked Xeljanz to an increased risk of blood clots in the lungs and overall death.  This has led to many lawyers, including us, to investigate potential Zeljanz lawsuits.

Months later, this forced Pfizer to put a black box warning on their drug label. This scares off doctors and patients. This is arguably why Pfizer did not suggest to the FDA adding this warning long ago. This warning is expected to put significant stress on the company’s profits as patients avoid the medication and file new failure to warn lawsuits. (The good news for Pfizer is that there warning will prevent many future lawsuits from being filed.)

A federal jury this week found that exposure to Roundup, the popular weed killer product, caused a California man to develop cancer.  How much money did they award?  They have not given an award because the case was bifurcated.  There will be another phase to determine damages.

In phase 2 of the trial in San Francisco, the jury determines Monsanto’s liability and decides how much money to award in damages. Hardeman v. Monsanto is the bellwether case for the Roundup MDL (what is an MDL?) which includes thousands of similar suits from federal courts around the country. The ultimate outcome of the Hardeman trial will dictate how the remaining Roundup cases are resolved and things are looking good for the plaintiffs so far.

The biggest and latest trend that teenagers are turning to today is the new activity known as “juuling”. Teenagers are beginning to “juul” just about anywhere, whether it be at school, at work, on the street, or in their own home.

Juul is a company that manufactures a highly potent and discrete e-cigarette device, often advertised as a “safer alternative” to smoking. This trend, however, is turning out to be anything but safe and doctors worried about public health are about to lose their minds.  And the number of Juul lawsuits are growing by the day.

Juul Lawsuit and Marketing

hernia mesh lawsuitsTo date, thousands of lawsuits related to defective hernia mesh implants have been filed in courts across the country. These suits claim that defective surgical implant devices were the cause of chronic pain, serious infections, obstructed bowels, perforated abdomen lining, and the development of adhesions. Some plaintiffs’ injuries were severe enough that they needed further surgeries to correct these issues.

The defendants in these lawsuits include, but are not limited to, Ethicon, C.R. Bard, and Atrium. The plaintiffs in these cases allege that the hernia mesh and patch implants were defectively designed which caused them to malfunction after being implanted in hernia repair surgery. At this point, none of these hernia mesh lawsuits have gone to trial or settled. However, an examination of prior settlements in similar cases suggests that hernia mesh plaintiffs can expect case values in the million dollar range.

What Is Hernia Mesh?

Hernia mesh is a device that is surgically implanted to repair hernias. By providing support to repaired muscle tissue, hernia meshes are supposed to help facilitate proper tissue re-growth. Surgical hernia meshes fall into two categories: absorbable and non-absorbable devices. Absorbable ones are made out of animal tissue. Once implanted, they absorb into the body. They can only provide reinforcement temporarily. New tissue growth is meant to replace the absorbable mesh once it degrades. By contrast, non-absorbable mesh implants are made from non-toxic plastic materials. They are meant to be permanent and not cause negative reactions inside the human body.

The Bair Hugger lawsuits are going poorly for plaintiffs.  Should you bring a claim if you believe you suffered an infection from a Bair Hugger during surgery?  Decide for yourself.  But despite some early punches to the face for plaintiffs, there is still a reasonable chance these cases end well for plaintiffs.  Let’s talk about these cases, what there are, where they are going, and what are the prospects that the 3M Bair Hugger cases reach a settlement.

What These Bair Hugger Cases Are About

bair hugger lawsuit

Bair Hugger MDL Coming Soon?

A Bair Hugger device is a temperature management system that is used during surgery.  The purpose of the invention is to help the body regulate the appropriate temperature. The Bair Hugger pushed hot air through a hose into a blanket specially made to work with the device. The hot air produced by Bair Hugger accumulates under the surgical drape covering the patient.  This hot air escapes under the surgical drape below the level of the surgical table or over top of it.

Bair Hugger Forced Air Warming Device is designed, manufactured, and marketed by Defendants 3M Company and Arizant Healthcare, Inc. There are more than 50,000 Bair Hugger FAWs in the United States.

How does it work? The Bair Hugger is a portable heater/blower connected by a flexible hose to a blanket, typically positioned the patient getting surgery.

Keeping a patient warm is particularly useful during knee and hip replacement surgery because the procedures tend to be very long.   The body loses heat increasingly over the course of surgery.

Another thing about metal hip and knee replacement surgery is that your body is particularly prone to infection. Why?  The metal helps spread the infection.

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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.

federal roundup trial The judge overseeing all 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 will be the last Combat Arms Earplug lawsuit that 3M will have to settle.

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

Taxotere is a chemotherapy drug used to treat a number of cancers, especially breast cancer. Taxotere is a taxanes.  Taxanes are diterpenes produced by the plants of the genus Taxus that have a taxadiene core. Taxanes are widely used as chemotherapy agents.

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.

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

federal roundup lawsuitThis 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 regarding testing, manufacturing, and marketing it. It also alleges that Monsanto was being deceptive by claiming that Roundup was as safe as table salt.

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