Last week, the subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, Ethicon was order to pay Ella Ebaugh an amount that totaled $57.1 million of damages due to receiving defective pelvic mesh implants. As a result of the defective implants Ebaugh claimed that she was in constant pain and left incontinent.
Ella Ebaugh, a 51-year-old resident of York County, Pennsylvania, brought the suit against Johnson & Johnson. She was initially implanted with two Ethicon devices, the TVT and TVT-Secur, in 2007 in order to treat her stress urinary incontience. Both Ethicon devices eroded ultimately traveling to her urethra. Subsequently, Ebaugh had to endure three agonizing corrective surgeries in order to remove the damaged devices. According the lawsuit, her injuries included vast scarring to her urethra, intrinsic sphincter deficiency, chronic urinary tract infections, chronic pelvic pain and dyspareunia, chronic pain during sex. Ebaugh even stated that somedays she can’t even get out of bed.
Ebaugh’s counsel based their argument around the claim that Johnson & Johnson manipulated information that was available to their company and withheld that information from medical professionals and consumers. Ultimately, this decision is the fifth successful suit in Philadelphia related to these devices. The breakdown of Ebaugh’s award is: $7.1 million in compensatory damages and $50 million in punitive damages.