Hernias are a relatively common medical condition in which a weak spot in the abdominal wall leads to a protrusion of an organ, such as the stomach, diaphragm, or bowel. Every year, tens of thousands of Americans suffer from hernias, and over half a million hernia repair surgeries are performed annually. Surgical hernia mesh implants have become popular as fast fixes, but there may be risks that medical device manufacturers are not disclosing to doctors—or to patients. Here’s what you need to know about hernia mesh surgery, the health risks of a defective mesh, and how to get legal help if you have been hurt.
What Is a Hernia Mesh?
A surgical hernia mesh is a type of implantable medical device sometimes used in hernia repair, as well as other types of reconstructive surgery. Meshes are designed to provide support to the damaged tissue and provide a surface to promote healing and closure of the injury.
Surgical meshes may be made entirely of synthetic material or may be made from porcine (pig) or bovine (cow) tissue. Synthetic meshes may be permanent implants, or may be designed to dissolve partially or entirely in the body; animal-derived meshes are typically designed to be absorbed by the body over time.
Unfortunately, hernia mesh implants are not without risks, and may be more trouble than they are worth. As with any device placed inside the body, they are prone to failure, especially when the mesh device is defective. There are multiple manufacturers of surgical hernia mesh products that may be defective, including the following companies:
- Ethicon, a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary company
- Atrium Medical
- Bard Davol
- Covidien (now known as Medtronic Covidien)
Several mesh products from different manufacturers have already been recalled from the market, but many more remain available. Some of the potentially defective surgical meshes include the following products:
- Atrium C-Qur Mesh
- Bard Davol 3DMax
- Bard Davol Composix Kugel Mesh
- Bard Davol Composix E/X Mesh
- Bard Davol PerFix Plug
- Bard Davol Ventralex Hernia Patch
- Ethicon Physiomesh
- Medtronic Covidien Parietex Mesh
- All Bard Davol Marlex polypropylene-constructed mesh products
Many surgical mesh products also see a wide variety of use outside of hernia repair, particularly including transvaginal implants for pelvic prolapse, urinary incontinence, as well as other types of reconstructive surgeries where tissue support is critical.
Surgical Hernia Mesh Complications
Mesh failure can come with dangerous side effects and life-threatening complications. Potential complications of a hernia mesh repair failure include the following medical issues:
- Bacterial infections, abscess, or sepsis
- Pain, swelling, or inflammation at the mesh site
- Fevers and chills
- Chronic pain
- Reoccurrence of the hernia
- Internal adhesions
- Mesh migration
- Bowel obstructions or organ perforations
Complications may happen in the days or weeks after surgery, but issues have also been known to appear months or even years after the procedure.
Hernia Mesh Lawsuits
Many patients who have suffered from severe side effects caused by a surgical mesh implant have begun filing suits against the manufacturers. One of the earliest lawsuits over the Composix Kugel Mesh, a product which was recalled three times by the Food and Drug Administration in three years, resulted in a $1.5 million award to a patient over alleged product defects. Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon, Atrium Medical, and Medtronics Covidien all have faced similar lawsuits by thousands as patients continue to seek relief from the costs of repeat surgeries and other treatments for defective mesh implants, as well as lost time and wages, pain and suffering, and more.
If you or someone you love has suffered harm as a result of a defective surgical hernia mesh implant, Wayne Wright LLP would like to hear from you. We make it our job to stand up for the rights of victims who have suffered due to defective medical devices and dangerous drugs, and we are here to help you when you need it most.
For a free consultation with a legal professional about your defective hernia mesh implant, call us by phone, click the live chat box on our website, or send us an email through the contact link on this page.