Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon Inc. (“Ethicon”) has been hit with a $3.27 million verdict after last Friday’s bellwether pelvic mesh trial found the company’s transvaginal sling was defectively designed and that users were not warned of its potential risks.
A jury in West Virginia federal court returned the compensatory damages verdict after deliberating for just three hours, finding in favor of plaintiff Jo Huskey on all counts and becoming the first federal court jury to find the sling defective. Huskey sued Ethicon in 2012, claiming the polypropylene mesh in her TVT-O sling eroded, causing her severe and ongoing pain as the mesh could not be entirely removed through surgery.
The verdict comes after Ethicon’s first bellwether trial in the same court in February returned a verdict in favor of the company, while Boston Scientific Corp. recently won its two bellwether trials for similar mesh products in Massachusetts. These bellwether trials represent many of the roughly 40,000 pelvic mesh lawsuits that have been consolidated in multidistrict litigation in West Virginia and in state courts across the country.