Defective Medical Devices Can Result in Complications, Medical Malpractice Claims
Nashua, NH (Law Firm Newswire) August 3, 2012 - Patients should know their rights if they experience side effects from a medical device.
“While medical devices save lives and even enhance them, when they go awry, the unthinkable happens,” said Charlie Donahue, a Nashua medical malpractice lawyer with offices in Keene, New Hampshire. “Consider the latest rash of trans-vaginal lawsuits, claiming side effects and complications.”
In the most recent case, the plaintiff sued the device’s maker, American Medical Systems, for serious injuries, resulting from the implantation of a vaginal mesh device called the AMS Monarc Sling system. The slim strip of mesh is intended to support the urethrea, reducing incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse in patients. “While the lawsuit was filed against the device maker, it could just as well have named the doctors who performed the surgery to implant it. They would have known about the problems with the device,” said Donahue.
The plaintiff’s suit cited numerous serious side effects after the mesh was implanted, including painful intercourse, mesh erosion and extreme pain. “As it turned out, the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning about the side effects, based on receiving over 1,000 complaints. However, the warning was issued too late for many women, and it was too late for the plaintiff in this case,” added Donahue.
The suit is seeking special, general and punitive damages, based on the allegation that the makers of the device should have warned doctors and patients about the potential side effects. It is not the first lawsuit of its kind nor does it appear that it will be the last, based on reports to date of other suits being filed in similar cases.
“When medical devices go wrong after they have been implanted, it is a double betrayal for victims. They trust their doctor to do right by them, and they trusted the device’s maker to provide them with a safe product. When both fail to protect the patient, they have no option but to sue for damages and try to get on with their lives,” commented Donahue. “When medical malpractice on this scale happens, the victims have the legal right to sue for compensation.”
Not all cases that look like medical malpractice are medical malpractice cases. Sometimes individual’s medical conditions are extremely difficult, and their histories are so complicated that there may not be medical malpractice. “However, it is always worth talking to a medical malpractice lawyer about any injury you are certain of, particularly if it is the result of a medical procedure. Take the time to get a legal opinion. The first consultation is free, and you will have peace of mind,” explained Donahue.
There are many people who do not wish to sue their doctors, for whatever reasons, and in those cases, a suit will oftentimes be filed against the maker of the medical device, not the doctor. However, that depends on the facts of the case, and sometimes the doctor and the device maker will be sued, but this is something that a well-qualified medical malpractice lawyer will determine when assessing the circumstances of a case.
Donahue Law Firm
143 West St.
Keene, NH 03431
Call: (603) 357-2363
Toll Free: (800) 498-4554
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