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Jury Awards $5.7M in Ethicon Abbrevo Transvaginal Mesh Injury Lawsuit

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Los Angeles, CAEthicon, the division of Johnson & Johnson that makes TVT Abbrevo, one of many transvaginal mesh products that are the subject of several thousand lawsuits, has been found liable and ordered by pay $5.7 million to plaintiff Coleen Perry.

The jury hearing Perry’s case deliberated for three days and found that Ethicon's conduct regarding the TVT ABbrevo vaginal sling amounted to "malice," her lawyer said. They awarded Perry $700,000 in compensatory damages and an additional $5 million in punitive damages.

This verdict makes the fourth against Ethicon. Currently, over 36,000 lawsuits have been filed against the TVT manufacturer in both state and federal courts, all alleging the devices, which are used to treat stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse, are defectively designed and result in significant personal injury.

Perry claimed the Abbrevo mesh began to erode in her body, causing pain that she said she expects to last the rest of her life, according to Reuters.

The FDA approved Abbrevo, one of Ethicon’s newer models of mesh products, in 2010, specifically to treat stress urinary incontinence. Perry, received her implant in 2011. She said she began experiencing a “pulling-type” pain almost immediately after surgery, Reuters reports.

Some women have undergone surgery to remove the vaginal mesh, but in some cases the damage has allegedly been permanent. In addition to surgery, treatment of complications associated with the mesh can include IV therapy, blood transfusions and drainage of hematomas or abscesses.

As of November 2014, more than 65,000 transvaginal mesh lawsuits had been filed against a number of manufacturers, including C.R. Bard, Ethicon (a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary), American Medical Systems and Boston Scientific and consolidated for pretrial proceedings. Some lawsuits have been settled or resulted in awards to the plaintiffs, but many lawsuits are still pending.

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