In this post, we will provide a status update on what’s happening in the Atrium C-Qur hernia mesh litigation.
The Atrium hernia mesh MDL (Atrium Medical Corp. C-Qur Mesh Products Liability Litigation 16-md-2753) has over 2,500 cases consolidated in the U.S. District Court for New Hampshire. This is the smallest of the three hernia mesh MDLs that are currently pending around the country.
As of September 2022, the number lawsuits pending in the Atrium hernia mesh class action(the smallest of the big 3 hernia mesh MDLs) increased by 17 over the last monthly period (August 15 to September 15). This brings the total number of pending cases up to 3,308.
The Atrium C-Qur Mesh Backstory
Atrium is a mid-sized medical device company based in New Hampshire that makes a line of hernia mesh implants called C-Qur. Atrium’s C-Qur hernia mesh products were widely used in hernia repair surgeries from 2006 to 2015 and are still on the market today.
Hernia mesh implants are used in hernia repair surgeries to help reinforce and strengthen the surgically repaired muscle wall. The mesh is intended to last inside the body forever, so it needs to be made of material that is durable but also compatible with human tissue and the immune system.
Atrium’s C-Qur mesh products were made out of durable plastic. To this plastic biologically compatible with tissue inside the body, the C-Qur mesh is covered with a proprietary coating made from omega-3 fatty acid (O3FA). Unfortunately, this unique O3FA coating did not function as designed and caused major problems.
The O3FA coating had a tendency to become detached from the plastic mesh after implantation in certain patients. This caused a host of serious problems including abnormal tissue attachment and immune system responses. In most cases where this occurred, the patient experienced severe pain and eventually had to undergo additional surgery to have the C-Qur mesh removed.
On top of these problems, the O3FA coating was causing problems with manufacturing and packaging. The FDA received numerous complaints about the O3FA coating melting away inside the packaging and trapping things like human hair and other contaminants during the manufacturing process. In 2015, these complaints led the FDA to take the drastic step of getting an injunction to temporarily stop the production of the C-Qur mesh products.
C-Qur Hernia Mesh Lawsuits
Beginning around 2016, a steady flow of C-Qur hernia mesh lawsuits started getting filed against Atrium across the country. In December 2016, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation created a new MDL in the U.S. District Court for New Hampshire for consolidated handling of all the Q-Cur lawsuits in Federal Courts were consolidated into a Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) in — In Re: Atrium Medical Corp. C-QUR Mesh Products Liability Litigation MDL No. 2753.
The hernia mesh lawsuits contend that the C-Qur products were fundamentally unsafe and were put on the market without adequate testing. The plaintiffs are asserting claims based on defective design and manufacturing defects.
The design defect claims are focused mainly on the issues with the fish oil coating on the C-Qur products. The O3FA coating had a tendency to degrade very quickly and would frequently separate from the plastic mesh after being implanted. In some plaintiffs, the O3FA coating caused life-threatening allergic reactions.
The manufacturing defect claims are based on the fundamental problems Atrium had with sterilization and packaging at its manufacturing plant, which led to the injunction in 2015.
Current Status of Atrium C-Qur MDL
Back in March 2021, the MDL Judge and the parties selected 2 representative cases for bellwether trials. In an MDL, the bellwether trials are like test cases. They give both sides an idea of the strength and weaknesses of their positions and how things will play out in the courtroom. The results of the bellwether trials usually facilitate settlement negotiations and help to value the remaining cases.
The 2 cases selected for bellwether trials in the Atrium C-Qur MDL were: Carrie Barron, et al. v. Atrium Medical Corp. (16-cv-742-LM) and Martha Luna v. Atrium Medical Corp., et al. (16-cv-372). The Barron case was supposed to be first out of the gate with a midsummer trial date of July 7, 2021. On the day of the pre-trial conference, however, the parties advised the judge that the case had been settled so this trial never happened.
The reason for this last-minute bailout is because Atrium is negotiating with the plaintiff’s counsel committee on a global settlement of the remaining 2,500 pending cases.
The fact that there is currently no trial date scheduled for the 2nd bellwether case (Luna) is further confirmation of this posture. Barring some sort of major setback during negotiations, we can probably expect the terms of a tentative settlement proposal before the end of this year.
What Settlement Amount Are Expected in Atrium C-Qur Hernia Mesh Lawsuits?
No one knows what the settlement amounts will be for the Atrium C-Qur hernia mesh lawsuits. But I can make prediction, right? I predict the average settlement payout compensation for these mesh lawsuits will be between $65,000 and 80,000.
More Atrium Hernia Mesh Lawsuits
It is mind blowing how many of these hernia mesh products are defective. The latest hernia mesh implants to become the subject of a large number of product liability lawsuits are the ProLite and ProLoop which are manufactured by Atrium Medical Corp.
With the number of hernia mesh lawsuits involving the ProLite and ProLoop devices growing rapidly, a motion has been filed with the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation requesting that the cases be consolidated into a new MDL. If this motion is granted, this will be the 4th pending hernia mesh MDL (and the second involving a mesh product made by Atrium).
Contact Miller & Zois About Your Hernia Mesh Lawsuit
If you were injured by a defective hernia mesh implant, it is not too late to file your own case. Call our hernia mesh lawyers today at 800-553-8082 for a free consultation.