Medical devices that have been developed throughout the years are a Godsend to patients who have been the recipients of hip, knee and other joint replacements, pacemakers, stents, artificial limbs, etc. These devices have eliminated substantial pain, suffering and disability for millions of Americans. However, and unfortunately, some of these devices, while well-intentioned, have resulted in more harm than good, and have actually increased or worsened the pain, suffering and disability caused by the original condition. In some cases, the use of these devices has even resulted in permanent disability or death. The Stealey Law Firm is currently evaluating cases involving a number of medical devices and medical products which may be dangerous and defective. As with the cases involving prescription drugs, we work in association with other firms throughout the country which are nationally recognized in the handling of these cases. These larger firms have the staff and the expertise to process these claims and stand up to the medical device companies and their insurance companies. Hiring the Stealey Law Firm to represent you in one of these cases will not cost you more in fees, as the attorneys’ fees are divided between The Stealey Law Firm and any other firm to whom a referral may be made. There are a number of lawyers advertising nationally for these cases, many of which do nothing more than refer your case to another law firm. Once that referral has been made, they are never seen or heard from again in some cases. Why not work with a lawyer in your community who can be your local contact and who will be available to you for consultation and assistance, rather than one of these lawyers who advertises nationally, but who may be located 500 or 1,000 or more miles away from you and may not be available to you if you need help? Call the Stealey Law Firm today about any of these medical device/medical products cases.
Transvaginal mesh is used in the transvaginal repair of a condition called pelvic organ prolapse (POP), or to surgically treat stress urinary incontinence (SUI). Pelvic organ prolapse is a condition that occurs when one of the pelvic organs such as the bladder, uterus, bowel or rectum, drops from the normal position and pushes against the wall of the vagina. Complications such as mesh erosion, pelvic pain, infections, bleeding and organ perforation have been reported as a result of transvaginal pelvic organ prolapsed procedure.
X-RAY RADIATION EXPOSURE
CT or CAT (computerized axial tomography) scans, fluoroscopic procedures (using a device called a fluoroscope), nuclear medicine, radiation therapy and certain other medical devices that emit x-rays, use ionizing radiation to either create images of the body or for other medical purposes. Exposure to radiation during these procedures over time can increase a person’s chances for developing cancer. Receiving high doses of radiation can also cause serious injuries including burns, cataracts, hair loss, scarring, jaw calcification, bone death, organ failure and death. These injuries are often the result of negligently manufactured medical equipment and/or improper use of this technology.
DEPUY HIP IMPLANT
DePuy Orthopaedics, a division of Johnson & Johnson, has recalled two of its hip replacement products: the ASR XL Acetabular System and the DePuy ASR Hip Resurfacing System. These are “metal on metal” hip replacement devices, which appear to have a high early failure rate in many patients. More than 90,000 DePuy ASR hip implants have been sold since July, 2003, and new data suggests that one of every eight may fail within five years, requiring additional surgery to replace the artificial hip. DePuy also manufacturers the Pinnacle hip implant. This device has not been recalled, however, the metal on metal Pinnacle device has produced the same adverse effects as the ASR.
CYPHER AND TAXUS DRUG ELUTING STENTS
Stents are small, lattice-shaped, metal tubes that are inserted permanently into arteries. They are used to hold open arteries that have narrowed due to plaque build-up caused by atherosclerosis. Stents can be made of metal only (bare metal stents) or they can be coated with small amounts of drugs that are released over time to help keep the arteries from being blocked again (drug-eluting stents, abbreviated as DES). Data from studies suggest a small but significant increased risk of stent thrombosis (blood clots) in patients who have drug-eluting stents. Stent thrombosis results in death or heart attack in the majority of cases.
At present there are two drug-eluting stents approved by the FDA in the United States: TAXUS™ Express2™ which is manufactured by Boston Scientific and CYPHER™ which is manufactured by Cordis Corporation. An advisory committee panel of experts concluded that these stents are associated with an increased risk of blood clots, heart attacks and death for a great number of patients receiving the devices.
KUGEL HERNIA MESH PATCH
Kugel hernia mesh patches were used in the repair of hernias and other abdominal tears and perforations. Many of these mesh patches have been recalled by the FDA because they were subject to deterioration, molding, mildewing and infection. Countless persons who had these mesh patches inserted in them during surgical procedures have subsequently undergo additional surgical procedures to remove these patches and repair the damage caused by them. Damages include the perforation of internal organs and the development of serious infections.