$18.5M Verdict in Consolidated Mesh Case Upheld on Appeal
The company behind an implantable transvaginal mesh medical device, Boston Scientific Corporation, failed to convince the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals that the lower district court helped the jury make the wrong decision.
The appeal was over four cases that were consolidated into one action due to the commonality of the cause of plaintiffs' injuries. The plaintiffs' injuries all involved Boston Scientific's transvaginal mesh implant. Notably, one of the component manufacturers clearly labeled their product in the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) to avoid use in permanent or long term implantable devices. Nevertheless, Boston Scientific used the component, and not surprisingly, many individuals suffered complications as a result.
The four individual plaintiffs each received about $4 million, which is rather consistent given the gravamen of a vaginal mesh complication. In addition to experiencing the complications, the plaintiffs all had to undergo additional corrective procedures, and all had to suffer needless pain and discomfort in their most sensitive, private, regions. What's worse, despite corrective procedures, the plaintiffs are expected to experience pelvic discomfort for the rest of their lives as a result of the faulty mesh device.
Typically, despite the knee jerk reaction AFV has conditioned in all Americans to laugh at groin hits, juries tend to return substantial verdicts when there are groin-area related injuries. In addition to the embarrassment, juries understand that sensitive body parts are more sensitive to pain, and individuals suffer more as a result.
While lawyers know the famous McDonalds Liebeck hot coffee case was as far from a frivolous lawsuit as it gets, when members of the public learn the details of the actual injury, most will think that the verdict was light.
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