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AMS Pays $54.5 Million in Vaginal Mesh Settlements

AMS Pays $54.5 Million in Vaginal Mesh Settlements

July 17, 2013 — According to filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. and their subsidiary unit American Medical Systems (AMS) will pay $54.5 million in settlements for some vaginal mesh lawsuits.

The companies did not disclose the number of lawsuits that were settled or the terms of each settlement. However, all of the claims involved injuries caused by implants used to treat stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse, including the Elevate, Perigee, and/or Apogee implants.

AMS reported that their estimated liability is at least $160 million. The company is currently facing at least 8,614 vaginal mesh lawsuits in a federal Multi-District Litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia. Only 70 cases have closed.

According to AMS, the settlements are not an admission of liability in future cases. Officials stated that they “intend to continue to vigorously defend themselves in the remaining mesh product liability cases and in any new cases that may arise.”

The settlements were reached just a few months after Johnson & Johnson’s unit Ethicon was found liability for more than $11 million in damages to Linda Gross, a South Dakota nurse who was injured by the Gynecare Prolift. Last year, C.R. Bard was ordered to pay $3.6 million to Christine Scott, a woman who was permanently injured by the Avaulta Plus.

Nearly 30,000 vaginal mesh lawsuits have been filed against at least six major manufacturers. Plaintiffs allege that the devices are defective, they were never tested properly, and manufacturers should have warned about the potential risks. Complications can include infection, scarring, nerve damage, erosion of the mesh into the vagina, organ damage, chronic pain, incontinence, additional surgery, and permanent inability to engage in sexual intercourse.

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