New York, New York (PRWEB) August 01, 2014
As it continues to investigate morcellator lawsuits (http://www.gynecaremorcellatorlawsuit.com/) on behalf of women who allegedly experienced the spread of uterine cancers due to the use of power morcellators in gynecological surgeries, Bernstein Liebhard LLP notes the growing reaction to Johnson & Johnson’s decision to withdraw a number of power morcellators marketed by its Ethicon, Inc. unit from the market. According to a report from The New York Times, some critics of the company said they were “pleasantly surprised” by the move, with one public health advocate noting that Johnson & Johnson has had a “rather abysmal track record on the public health front of ethical breaches in the last few years” when dealing with other problematic products, such as pelvic mesh implants.*
Strong reaction also came from Dr. Hooman Noorchashm, who launched a petition to ban power morcellators after his wife was diagnosed with advanced cancer following a morcellator hysterectomy in 2013.
“Our Firm has heard from a number of women who are now fighting for their lives after a power morcellator allegedly spread uterine cancer cells throughout their bodies. We are not surprised that Johnson & Johnson’s decision has elicited strong reactions,” says Bernstein Liebhard LLP, a nationwide law firm representing victims of defective drugs and medical devices. The Firm is now evaluating morcellator lawsuits on behalf of women who may have experienced the upstaging of undiagnosed cancers due to uterine morcellation.
Morcellator Cancer Risk
Power morcellators are used in minimally-invasive hysterectomies and fibroid removals to shred tissue so that it can be easily removed through a small incision in the abdomen. In April, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) warned that use of the devices in gynecological procedures could spread undetected uterine cancer cells throughout a woman’s body, resulting in an upstaging of the disease and greatly reducing her chances of long-term survival.
Last month, the Journal of the American Medical Association published a study which found that as many as 1 in 368 women undergoing such procedures may have undiagnosed cancers present in their uterus. While women over 65 were more likely to have undetected cancer, the study found that 32 percent of the morcellation patients with undiagnosed disease were younger than 50.**
According to a report from Bloomberg.com, Johnson & Johnson initially suspended sales of its Ethicon power morcellators on April 30th, stating that it was awaiting further guidance from the FDA. In announcing its decision to recall several of the devices, the company noted that risks and benefits associated with power morcellators remain uncertain. *** In a letter to its customers posted on the Ethicon website, hospitals were asked to return three models of power morcellators: Gynecare Morcellex and Gynecare X-Tract tissue morcellators, and the Morcellex Sigma tissue morcellator system.****
In the meantime, court records indicate that morcellator lawsuits have been mounting in U.S. courts since the beginning of the year. The first was filed in February by the husband of a 53-year-old woman who died from uterine cancer less than a year after she underwent power morcellation filed a morcellator lawsuit in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania. (Case No. 14 5557) On May 1, 2014 a similar complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court, Western District of New York on behalf of a woman who blames uterine morcellation for the spread of leiomyosarcoma in her abdominal cavity. (Case 6:14-cv-06218) That case was followed by the May 13th filing of a complaint in U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, which alleges the use of a Wolf Power Morcellator promoted the dissemination of uterine cancer cells throughout a woman's peritoneal cavity. (Case No. Case5:14-cv-02209-PSG)
Patients whose cancers may have been spread via uterine morcellation could be entitled to file a morcellator lawsuit against the manufacturer of the device used in their surgery. To learn more about the risks potentially associated with power morcellators, please visit Bernstein Liebhard LLP's website. To obtain a free legal review, please call 800-511-5092.
*nytimes.com/2014/08/01/business/johnson-johnson-wins-praise-for-pulling-uterine-surgery-devices.html?_r=0, New York Times, August 1, 2014
**jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1890400, JAMA, July 22, 2014
***bloomberg.com/news/2014-07-31/j-j-withdraws-hysterectomy-device-tied-to-cancer-spread.html, Bloomberg.com, July 31, 2014
***ethicon.com/sites/default/files/managed-documents/Ethicon%20Morcellation%20Devices%20Customer%20Letter%20Final.pdf, Ethicon, Inc., July 30, 2014
About Bernstein Liebhard LLP
Bernstein Liebhard LLP is a New York-based law firm exclusively representing injured persons in complex individual and class action lawsuits nationwide since 1993. As a national law firm, Bernstein Liebhard LLP possesses all of the legal and financial resources required to successfully challenge billion dollar pharmaceutical and medical device companies. As a result, our attorneys and legal staff have been able to recover more than $3 billion on behalf of our clients. The Firm has been named by The National Law Journal to the Plaintiffs’ Hot List, recognizing the top plaintiffs firms in the country, for the past 12 consecutive years. Bernstein Liebhard LLP is the only firm in the country to be named to this prestigious list every year since it was first published in 2003.
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Bernstein Liebhard LLP