United States of America

Pitocin and Syntocinon are common brand names for the drug Oxytocin, a synthetic hormone used to help start or expedite childbirth.  This intervenous drug increases the intercellular concentrations of calcium in the middle layer of the uterine wall, which promotes uterine contraction.  While there are other methods of expediting delivery such as amniotomy or stripping of the membranes., nipple stimulation and soap suds enema, Pitocin and Syntocinon are the go-to therapies to initiate or accelerate delivery.

Below is a list of GEICO settlements and verdicts in Oregon in 2016.

  • Oregon: $120,000 Verdict. An adult female is driving in the left lane of a three-lane, one-way road when she is struck by a vehicle attempting to make a left turn from the center lane. She was insured by GEICO, and filed a claim to recover underinsured motorist benefits. GEICO argues the extent of her injuries, but a jury awards her $1,991.69 for economic damages and $73,008.31 for non-economic damages.
  • Oregon: $99,978 Verdict. Plaintiff is traveling on an off-ramp in front of defendant’s vehicle. Plaintiff stops her vehicle at a stop sign. She inches out to look at traffic, and defendant’s vehicle strikes the rear of her vehicle. The plaintiff suffers a left shoulder injury requiring surgery as a result, as well as thoracic and lumbar sprains. The defendant is insured by GEICO, and ordered to pay $74,978 in medical expenses, $20,000 in lost wages, and $5,000 in non-economic damages to the plaintiff.

The Essure Permanent Birth Control System was to provide women a safer, less involved (and painful) tubal ligation alternative. This medical device was triumphantly marketed as the “[only] sickwomanFDA-approved permanent form of birth control with a procedure that can be performed in an office setting without general anesthesia.” Unfortunately for the 750,000 women who have used this system since the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) approved it in 2002, both new scientific research and anecdotal evidence suggest that Essure has caused substantial injuries to thousands of patients, motivating calls among consumer advocates for the drug’s recall and spurring legal action.

How Essure Works and Why the System Appeals to Women

The Essure system consists of two flexible coils that are inserted into the Fallopian tubes in order to produce permanent sterilization. Both patients and doctors have liked Essure, at least conceptually, because the system offers a less-invasive solution than tubal ligation and other birth control surgeries, ostensibly with shorter healing time and fewer side effects. Premarket studies tracked women’s pregnancies before and after Essure implantation, leading Bayer to assert that the device is 99.83 percent effective at preventing pregnancy and that “mild to moderate pain” and “spotting” are the most common side effects.

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Jury verdict abortion malpractice

Juries have not been impressed with Johnson & Johnson’s Arguments

Out of nowhere, talcum powder ovarian cancer cases became the hottest mass tort case.  What happened and where are we now in these lawsuits?

The Product and the Big Question

For many decades, talcum powder has enjoyed great success as a consumer product. While young mothers often eagerly sprinkle it on their infants during diaper changes to help absorb wetness and prevent diaper rash, other women used the powdery substance as a regular part of their feminine hygiene practices.

Also, both male and female athletes routinely use talcum powder products to try and lower their chances of developing athlete’s foot and other fungal infections. Only limited complaints have been lodged for many years about the possibility that talcum powder could cause ovarian cancer. However, many women are now challenging their earlier beliefs about this product’s safety. In fact, the first successful lawsuit against talcum powder product giant, Johnson & Johnson, have now been filed and won.
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Cauda Equina Syndrome is a neurological disorder that stems from an injury to the bundle of nerve roots that exit the spinal cord. Cauda equina frequently leads to medical malpractice lawsuits.

cauda equina settlements

The treatment for Cauda Equina Syndrome is generally immediate surgical decompression. The sooner this can be achieved the better. You usually have a 48-hour window of opportunity with which you can reverse the symptoms. The malpractice lawsuits in these cases occur when the symptoms were there to be seen during that window but were missed, usually in the ER or by a primary care doctor or by the surgical staff after spinal surgery.

Symptoms

Doctors frequently miss the clear symptoms of Cauda Equina Syndrome which include:

  • Low back pain
  • Sciatica (particularly at L5/S1)
  • Loss of sensation in the butt or genital sensory disturbance
  • Bowel, bladder or sexual dysfunction (bladder complications are a particular hallmark of cauda equina).

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NexiumPatients who experience acid indigestion, heartburn or other stomach ailments often seek relief from their symptoms by taking one or more drugs like Nexium.  Many patients have gotten great relief from heartburn and related symptoms which experience little if any side effects.

Those are the happy ending stories. But new research studies indicate that serious Nexium side effects (including kidney disease) can develop when prescribed or OTC (over-the-counter) heartburn medications are taken in higher doses — or for extended time periods.

Back in the 1980s when drugs like Nexium, Prilosec, and Prevacid were first marketed in the United States, many physicians believed they could benefit their patients because the risk of using the was outweighed by the benefits.  Growing scientific literature, including new studies published in 2016 in JAMA Internal Medicine and the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, question that assumption. Continue reading

Disc injury claims

Value of Injury Cases: Disc Injuries

I think it is useful to write about jury verdicts and give thoughts as to why I think the jury found as they did and the issues that arose in the case.  Why?  Because people are looking online for information about the value of their cases.  On our website, we provide a ton of verdict information for victims, many of which suffered a herniated disc.  This helps give some lens to the value of a case.  But it hardly tells the real story of the claim and why a jury may have valued it the way that they did.  So hopefully posts like this help educate those looking for answers.

Facts of Mayrink v. Luchsinger

This is a herniated disc case.   Plaintiff, a painter by trade, crashed into a median strip after being pushed off the road by the defendant who must have changed lanes without looking.   Usually, in these lane change cases, you almost invariably have a liability fight on your hands.  Defense counsel in this case, probably wisely, admitted responsibility.  Why is this wise?  Defense counsel often admits liability because they know if they fight and lose there is real credibility lost on the scope of the injuries battle.   By admitting fault, defendant seems more credible and honest than if they fight on liability and lose.  Continue reading

Things That Could Hurt You: Prilosec

What is it?

Prilosec-300x236Made by AstraZeneca, Prilosec is the brand name for a generic drug, omeprazole, used in combating acid reflux by reducing the amount of acid produced in the stomach.

Prilosec was the first of a class of drugs known as proton pump inhibitors (“PPIs”), which are prescribed to treat chronic heart burn, acid reflux, and other gastrointestinal maladies. The reason Prilosec works is its active ingredient, omeprazole. Nexium, another drug that has been the subject of a great number of lawsuits, is a big competitor with Prilosec.  There is so much money in PPIs.  The manufacturers of these drugs have been in litigation with each other for a very long time, battling over patents and profits.

How popular is it?

Following its introduction in 1989. Prilosec rocketed to widespread popularity. In 2013, Prilosec sales were $358.8 million – making the drug the second-highest-selling over-the-counter digestive remedy. Prilosec belongs to a class of acid-reducing medicines on which the public spends over $14 billion a year.

The active ingredient in Prilosec, Omeprazole, is a racemic mixture containing S- and R-enantiomers. Enantiomers are molecules that have two Non-superimposable mirror image forms Racemic mixtures, such as omeprazole, contain equal proportions of the two enantiomers. Continue reading

The antibiotic family of fluoroquinolones goes by many brand names, including Cipro, Levaquin, and Avelox. Every year, millions of Americans take fluoroquinolones to treat bacterial infections, including urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and bronchitis. Since the antibiotics work on a number of different conditions, they are popular among doctors.

Surprisingly Diverse Dangers

headache-300x199However, new studies indicate that these medications can also have serious side effects. These studies have linked fluoroquinolone use to risks like peripheral neuropathy. Peripheral neuropathy is a form of permanent nerve damage.  It can result in constant pain and often, limited mobility. In many cases, peripheral neuropathy is irreversible, which means that patients who develop it must live with pain and impairment for the rest of their lives.

Currently, several pharmaceutical companies are facing lawsuits filed by patients who have suffered irreversible peripheral neuropathy after taking fluoroquinolone. Evidence in court documents indicates that drug companies may have known about the nerve damage risks as early as 1996, but they did not remove these medications from the market or alert patients and doctors to the risks.

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Today, a U.S. Judicial on Multidistrict Litigation panel of federal judges will hear arguments on Plaintiffs’ request to consolidate all of the knee and hip infection lawsuits that have been filed in Bair Hugger MDL Coming Soon?federal court claims the infection was allegedly caused by a 3M Bair Hugger warming blanket.

What These Bair Hugger Cases Are About

A Bair Hugger device is a temperature management system that is used during surgery.  The purpose of the invention is to help the body regulate the appropriate temperature. The Bair Hugger pushed hot air through a hose into a blanket specially made to work with the device. The hot air produced by Bair Hugger accumulates under the surgical drape covering the patient.  This hot air escapes under the surgical drape below the level of the surgical table or over top of it

Bair Hugger Forced Air Warming Device is designed, manufactured, and marketed by Defendants 3M Company and Arizant Healthcare, Inc.
There are more than 50,000 Bair Hugger FAWs in the United States.

How does it work? The Bair Hugger is a portable heater/blower connected by a flexible hose to a blanket, typically positioned the patient getting surgery.

Keeping a patient warm is particularly useful during knee and hip replacement surgery because the procedures tend to be very long.   The body loses heat increasingly over the course of surgery.

Another thing about metal hip and knee replacement surgery is that your body is particularly prone to infection. Why?  The metal helps spread the infection.

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