Power Morcellator Lawsuit Complaints Filed Nationwide Contend That Laparoscopic Power Morcellators Used During Hysterectomies And Removal Of Fibroids Can Spread And Upstage Undetected Uterine Cancer.
Southern Med Law’s Founder, Dr. François Blaudeau, who filed the first power morcellation lawsuits in the United States, reports that a petition has been filed with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) to consolidate all federally filed power morcellator cancer lawsuits alleging that power morcellators spread undetected cancer cells during gynecological surgeries. Court documents show that six plaintiffs filed a request on June 18 to transfer 22 morcellator lawsuit claims pending in 16 different courts to the U.S. District Court, District of Kansas. The plaintiffs asked the JPML to allow U.S. District Judge Kathryn H. Vratil to manage the coordinated pretrial proceedings. The plaintiffs requested a consolidation because all the complaints allege that laparoscopic power morcellators that are used during a hysterectomy or a myomectomy to remove uterine fibroids can spread and upstage cancer or the development of recurrent parasitic fibroids, according to the petition. The morcellator lawsuit claims, which are filed against various morcellator manufacturers, also involve common questions of fact, including whether a power morcellator is capable of causing the injuries alleged in the lawsuits, the petition said. (In Re: Power Morcellator Litigation, MDL Case No. 78)
“As filers of the first power morcellation lawsuits, Southern Med Law will present oral arguments before the JPML at its October 1, 2015 meeting in New York City. Southern Med Law has not yet decided whether to support the petition but will make the determination based on the best interest of the women the firm represents”, states Dr. Blaudeua.
Court documents indicate that among the pending morcellation lawsuits under consideration for centralization is one in which Dr. Blaudeau serves as lead counsel. The case was filed on a behalf of the husband of a Pennsylvania woman who died of metastatic leiomyosarcoma, a rare and aggressive form of uterine cancer, in February 2013. The morcellation lawsuit asserts that the woman had a minimally-invasive hysterectomy in March 2012 in which a power morcellator was used. Nine days later, the woman was diagnosed with leiomyosarcoma. The morcellation complaint purports that the morcellation manufacturers knew of the cancer risk associated with their surgical devices but concealed the danger from U.S. health regulators and the medical community. The lawsuit names as defendants morcellator manufacturers LiNa Medical US d/b/a LiNA Medical, Blue Endo and Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon Inc. (Case No. 5:14-cv-1557, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania)
As stated in the petition, laparoscopic power morcellators are electronically powered medical devices with spinning blades that shred, grind, and core uterine tissue into smaller pieces or fragments so the tissue can be removed through small incisions in the abdomen. The morcellator’s spinning blade shreds the tissue masses at a high rate of speed and can disperse cellular particles from the shredded tissue throughout the abdomen during surgery. According to the court document, morcellated fragments can be left in the abdominal and pelvic area or attach to surrounding organs and this allows cancer cells to travel to various parts of the body. Once implanted, the morcellated fragments begin to grow. (In Re: Power Morcellator Litigation, MDL Case No. 78)
Southern Med Law notes that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued strong warnings against power morcellation use in 2014. in April 2014, the FDA strongly discouraged surgeons from using a power morcellator to perform hysterectomies or myomectomies because of the tool’s potential to spread undetected cancer cells. The law firm reviewed a Wall Street Journal report in which Johnson & Johnson, the largest morcellator manufacturer, announced in April 2014 that it was suspending sales of new morcellators in wake of the FDA’s warning. Johnson & Johnson, which sells power morcellators through its Ethicon unit, said in July 2014 that it would withdraw the device from the global market and would ask its customers to return their morcellators, according to the Wall Street Journal report. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that the FBI has launched an investigation into power morcellators and whether Johnson & Johnson knew about the cancer risks before taking its device off the market.
[wsj.com/articles/johnson-johnson-to-call-for-voluntary-return-of-morcellators-1406754350, July 30, 2014]
[wsj.com/articles/fbi-is-investigating-surgical-device-1432746641, May 27, 2015]
If you or a loved one has developed uterine cancer after robotic morcellation, please contact Southern Med Law to learn more about your legal rights. You can arrange for a free, no obligation power morcellator lawsuit review by filling out our online form, or by calling the office directly at 205-547-5525.
About Southern Med Law And Filing A Morcellator Lawsuit
Southern Med Law and Dr. François Blaudeau possess a unique understanding of the medical and legal questions at issue in power morcellator cancer lawsuit claims. It is this in-depth knowledge that is tantamount to a successful legal representation that protects the rights of the injured.
The staff at Southern Med Law is not only trained in successfully handling your legal needs but also understand the pain and suffering and treatment from a medical point of view, and is committed to protecting the rights of all individuals.
Southern Med Law
Southern Institute for Medical and Legal Affairs
2224 1st Ave., North
Birmingham, AL 35203
Phone: (205) 547-5525
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