Abra Pradaxa

May 31st, 2018

It’s amazing what medical science can do. New medicines can sometimes it seem like magic.  But medicines are not magic.  

They need to be thoroughly tested to make sure they are not causing more harm than good.  

Case in point – Pradaxa: In 2010 the FDA approved the drug dabigatran under the brand name Pradaxa. It was approved to treat atrial fibrillaion. In 2014 it was approved for use to treat deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE). But it wasn’t magic. Pradaxa had a serious side effect – internal bleeding. And doctors didn’t find a way to mitigate that condition until 2014. This complication caused bleeding of the kidneys and in the gastrointestinal system. In addition, the drug may have led to dyspepsia, further heart problems, strokes, brain hemorrhages, and deaths associated with those conditions.

Boehringer Ingelheim, Pradaxa’s manufacturer, settled thousands of class action lawsuits in 2014, paying $650 million dollars.

But just settling some lawsuits didn’t make Boehringer’s problems go away like magic. There are still some suits out there, and some that are still being filed.

If you think you are having issues because you were prescribed Pradaxa, contact us right away. If you wait too long your chances of getting justice may vanish like a rabbit into a magician’s hat. Unlike the magic the stage magician uses, the statutes of limitations can make some things vanish forever.

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Meshy Business

May 26th, 2018

You’ve heard the expression – always go with your gut feeling.  If your gut tells you something is wrong, even if you can’t figure out what it is, check it out.

Back in June we talked about Johnson & Johnson’s subsidiary Ethicon and that they were withdrawing their Physiomesh product from the market. The Physiomesh is a fabric inserted into the body to help repair hernias. The Physiomesh was withdrawn for high revision rates. If you recall, the revision rate is measurement of how often a medical procedure such as surgery has to be redone. So if two out of every hundred procedure needed to be done the revision rate would be 2%.

In defending itself in a Georgia lawsuit regarding the failure of the Physiomesh to do an adequate job, one of the defenses Ethicon is putting forth is the physician instructions.

Let’s think about this.

Let say I make 300 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, 100 each with three different brands of bread. If the jelly squirts out the sandwich needs to be remade – we’ll call that the revision rate. So if the jelly squirts out twice with brand A bread, brand A has a 2 % revision rate. If the jelly squirts out four times with brand B, brand B has a 4% revision rate. Let’s say that the jelly squirts out twenty times with brand C. 

Now explain this to me – Did the instructions of how to make a PBJ really affect how often the jelly squirted out of the sandwich? Or was it the bread?

I know this is oversimplifying things, but in this instance the jelly squirting out is someone’s innards and probably pretty darn painful. And redoing abdominal surgery is a lot more pain and expense than making a sandwich.

Instructions? My gut says otherwise. How about yours?

If you are having complications due to Physiomesh, give us a call.

Revisiting Takata

March 28th, 2018

If you’ve been reading this blog regularly you’ve heard a bit about Takata. The company may not be a household name, but you’ve probably heard a bit about them. They’re responsible for one of the largest recalls in US history. They created airbags for over a dozen car manufacturers. These airbags were recalled in over forty million vehicles when it was discovered that they could inflate improperly and send shrapnel into the people they were supposed to be protecting from injury.

These issues caused Takata some serious legal issues. They have paid over 1 billion dollars in fines and they have been in bankruptcy. Fortunately, TK Holdings, the US division of Takata, has reached a resolution. The resolution has been approved by a bankruptcy judge and a a trust fund is being established to compensate those injured.

This fund, the Takata Airbag Individual Restitution Fund, will be run by special master Eric Green of Harvard. Several car manufacturers will be paying into the fund that will allow the fund to pay out millions to the hundreds of people who have been injured or killed as a result of the faulty devices.

The resolution agreement sets up funds with $125 million to compensate victims and $850 million to compensate automakers for the replacement installations, a process that is still ongoing and will continue probably for at least two more years.

Over forty million vehicles were affected by this recall. If you don’t know if your vehicle was one of them, check with your dealer. We hope you haven’t been personally affected by this, or any other recall of faulty automotive equipment. But if you have, give us a call.

Ford Recall – A Turning Point?

March 22nd, 2018

Ford is recalling over 1.3 million vehicles. The 2014-2018 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ are being recalled for problems with their steering. The flaw in these vehicles allows a critical bolt in the steering column to vibrate and come loose. When that happens an important part of your vehicle not only stops working properly, it may even come off. Believe it or not, that important part is the steering wheel.

Now everyone likes driving a cool car. But there are some important parts of the car that are really critical. If you can’t stop, or you can’t steer, your car is effectively useless. It becomes a hazard to the driver and anyone who happens to get even near the vehicle.

If you have a Ford Fusion of Lincoln MKZ manufactured in those years, contact your Ford or Lincoln dealer and see if your vehicle is affected by recall 18S08. Steering wheels that detach are great for vaudeville routines and cartoons, but not real life where people depend on their vehicles to get to where they need to be.

Let’s Not Make Kids Sicker

February 20th, 2018

 

No one likes to see their child suffer. When you kid is sick you want to comfort them and do anything you can to make them feel better.  And while the flu can be serious, it could be much worse.

But the last thing you want to do as a parent is make it worse.  But inadvertently some parents and drug makers are doing just that.

It’s one thing to have a kick sick with the flu, but psychosis and hallucinations?  Sometimes so bad that poor child wants to jump out a window?  That’s serious stuff.  I wish this wasn’t a  real example.  I’m usually a fan of a good flu pun, but I just didn’t think it appropriate this time.

Unfortunately, these can be some of the side effects of the popular flu medicine Tamiflu (also known as Oseltamivir). These are common enough that the drug has been banned in Japan for use in children for over a decade. The flu can be serious, but would you prefer that to potentially permanent neuropsychiatric problems, brain infections, convulsions, delirium and delusions?

We all want to relieve our children’s suffering. But parents and doctors need to be aware of the side effects that might be attached to the drugs given to relieve the suffering.

Call If You Have Cancer After a Hysterectomy Due to Morcellation

July 28th, 2016

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If you have been diagnosed with upstaged uterine or abdominal sarcoma or leiomyosarcoma, call our law firm. At The Garmon Law Firm, we help women and their families after a devastating diagnosis has been delivered. You are an integral part of your family and getting sick can cause everything to stop while you receive ongoing medical care.  This can harm both you and your entire family emotionally, mentally, and financially.  Not being able to work or needing to hire someone to help you, can have a significant financial toll, but, there is hope.  You may not have come down with this condition for no reason. You could be suffering due to a medical procedure using the powered morcellator.  If so, you are entitled to financial compensation, something that we can help to recover as your injury attorney.

Maximizing the Value of Your Claim

You could be entitled to financial compensation, if your condition was caused by a faulty medical device or your doctor performing your hysterectomy without giving a proper warning of the risk associated with it.  In this case, we will evaluate what you have paid to-date in medical bills and what you are likely to pay in the future.  We will also analyze how your quality of life has been impacted and how much money you have either lost or had to pay due to your condition.  You could receive compensation for things like –

  • Diagnostic services
  • Procedures
  • Hospital stays
  • Hiring help for the house
  • Needing to secure child care
  • Being unable to work
  • A spouse needing to take time off to care for you
  • Pain and suffering
  • And more

At The Garmon Law Firm, we account for all of the ways that your life has been negatively impacted through the use of the morcellator device and work to ensure that you receive as much compensation as possible.

About the Morcellator Device

The FDA issued a warning in November of 2014 which was an update of the original warning issued in April of that year. The warning went out to healthcare providers, cancer advocacy groups, manufacturers of devices used for minimally invasive surgeries, medical associations, etc. In other words, the medical community has been made aware of the dangers associated with this device and method of performing a hysterectomy. Typically, it has been used for women undergoing a hysterectomy or myomectomy.

The problem is that one out of every three hundred and fifty women that undergo a hysterectomy, in order to remove fibroids, have a specific type of uterine sarcoma which can lead to uterine cancer. The problem is that when a laparoscopic power morcellation is completed, there is no way to tell if the cancer exists and, as a result, cancerous cells may spread.  If this has happened to you, you have the right to seek financial compensation and at the Garmon Law Firm, we can help you to do so.

 

The FDA Warning About Invokana

July 15th, 2016

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If you or someone you know has taken Invokana, we encourage you to call our office immediately. There are significant side effects associated with taking this dangerous drug, so it is in your best interest to speak with a doctor about using a different medication and then to call our office to discuss your legal options if you have suffered harm from taking this drug.

FDA Alert:  The FDA issued a formal warning for patients that are taking this type 2 diabetes medication. The warning was sent out to family practitioners, nursing staff, and those practicing Endocrinology. In other words, your doctor or physician should be well aware of the dangers associated with taking Invokana. In fact, it is likely that they were aware of this FDA alert when prescribing it to you. If not, they certainly should have been since the warning was issued in September of 2015.

The FDA alert for Invokana addressed the issue with the decrease in bone mineral density along with concerns related to bone fractures and the need to continue to evaluate the risks that are associated with taking this drug. The warning included updates to side effect labeling and for doctors to be informed when prescribing to patients. The FDA warned that any patient taking Invokana who had suffered from bone fractures or a loss of bone density in the hip and spine should speak with their doctor and discuss taking a new drug immediately.

A Failure to Warn Patients

The challenge is that many doctors have failed to warn their patients about the true risks involved with taking Invokana. If you are one of them and have suffered a serious health consequences as a result of taking this drug, you are entitled to financial compensation to pay for your injuries, additional medical bills, time you missed from work, and pain and suffering. However, your doctor is not going to simply offer this to you, nor is the drug manufacturer. To receive the compensation you deserve, you need to hire an attorney. At our office we are experienced at handling Invokana cases and know how to maximize the value of our clients claims.   Remember, as a patient you have the right to receive safe medical care and to take drugs that are not going to harm you. Unfortunately, this is not always the case and in order to hold the drug manufacturer accountable, you need to file a case in civil court. We can help you to do so.

Call to Discuss Your Case

We invite you to call the Garmon Law Firm to discuss your case in further detail.

 

Johnson & Johnson Mesh Slings Cause Erosion, Pain, Incontinence

July 13th, 2016

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Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against Johnson & Johnson due to complications caused by their transvaginal mesh slings. The mesh slings, or Mentor ObTape sling, is used to treat stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP) in women. This mesh was originally used to treat hernia repairs in the 1950’s. In the 1970’s doctors began using the mesh abdominally to treat SUI and POP. Physicians cut a piece of mesh into the desired shape and surgically implanted it in the abdomen.

The Food and Drug Administration did not approve the use of transvaginal mesh until the year 1996. The FDA did not require studies of the drug on humans before they approved it. These transvaginal mesh slings have been found to cause major complications in women. The mesh can erode through the tissue of the vagina and cause bleeding and painful intercourse. In some cases, the erosion goes into the bowel and can lead to infection. Some women experience incontinence, pain, and discharge. Often women undergo revision surgeries only to discover that the mesh has become absorbed into the tissue of the vagina and cannot be easily removed.

Physicians and consumers were not warned of these possible complications until it was too late for many women. Pharmaceutical manufacturer Johnson & Johnson has agreed to settle over 100 lawsuits regarding their mesh sling product, awarding some women over a million dollars.

What you can do

If you or someone you know has used mesh slings and suffered any of the above injuries contact us today. We will evaluate your case to determine if transvaginal mesh is to blame for your complications. These types of injuries can take a heavy toll on people both physically and financially. We know how difficult this can be for you and your family. Contact the Garmon Law Firm today to get the compensation you deserve.

Speak with a Lawyer if You Took Depakote While Pregnant

July 9th, 2016

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Did you take the drug Depakote during your pregnancy?  If you did, and your child was born with a birth defect, you could be entitled to financial compensation. While there are some standard side effects with this drug, like fever, rash, weakness, dizziness, and hair loss, the warnings were not clear regarding how risky this drug was for pregnant women.  As a result, many were prescribed it and children have been born with birth defects as a result.

Some of the common challenges pregnant women and their children have had, include:

  • Craniofacial defects, including cleft palate and skull malformations
  • Neural tube defects
  • Cardiovascular malformations and heart defects
  • Spina bifida

Understanding the Risks Associated with Taking Depakote

According to the FDA, the risk to pregnant women and their baby are the highest during the first trimester since many women do not realize that they are pregnant.  If you were taking this drug and stopped once you realized you were pregnant, but your baby was still born with a physical challenge, you could have a case. Stopping the drug part-way through the pregnancy has not been proven to stop the defect from forming.

Were You Warned of the Risk?

The FDA has recommended that doctors prescribe a different medication to women of childbearing years due to the incredibly high risk associated with taking it.  If you were prescribed this drug but not warned about the danger of becoming pregnant while on it, your doctor could also share some liability for failing to inform you.

Depakote Was Not Initially Approved for Treating Depression

The spike in these cases is largely due to the additional way that Depakote is being used.  It was approved in 1978 to treat epilepsy but it was not until recently that the FDA gave clearance for it to be used to treat both migraines and depression.  This has led to a significant expansion in how the drug is used by women in general.  Since migraine headaches are typically not a concern for OBGYNs, the link between the medication and potential pregnancy risks are often not made in time to prevent a birth defect. This is why even if you were under the care of an OB, they may not have made the connection.

Speak with an Attorney

At the Garmon Law Firm, we understand how traumatic it can be to have a child with a birth defect. We also understand how much money it can cost to secure the proper medical care for them.  We can work to ensure that the right parties are held accountable and that you receive any financial compensation that is due to you.  To discuss your case in detail, call and schedule a consultation.

 

SSRI Medications, Including Zoloft, Can Lead to Birth Defects

July 5th, 2016

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If you recently gave birth to child that was born with a birth defect, you may be struggling to learn why. Understandably, this can be an emotionally draining experience and the need to search for answers is all too common.  If you were taking medications during your pregnancy, that is a good place to begin your investigation.  As experienced personal injury attorneys, we have helped clients that have suffered harm due to taking SSRI medications while pregnant.  Medications including Zoloft, Effexor, Wellbutrin, and Paxil have all been known to cause birth defects, which is alarming considering how frequently they are prescribed.

Determining Negligence and Proving Your Case

If you think that your child was harmed due to you taking SSRIs during your pregnancy, your first step should be to call our office.  Proving negligence is not as easy as it seems. It is not enough to simply say that you were taking the drug.  We need to gather evidence that can demonstrate when you were taking the drug, why it was prescribed, if your doctor gave you the appropriate warnings about not becoming pregnant, or if your doctor informed you that there was an actual risk of birth defects if becoming pregnant while on the drug. Next, we will need to gather evidence from your child’s physician to demonstrate the type of birth defect that they have suffered. Then we can go to work linking the two. It is necessary to do a thorough job of gathering evidence and building a strong case so that you and your child can receive the maximum possible compensation. This is why it is so important to work with an experienced attorney that understands how the legal process works and also understands the complications and risks that are involved with taking SSRIs during pregnancy. We do and we have the investigative resources necessary to build a strong case for your benefit.

Determining the Value of Your Claim

One of the questions we are regularly asked by clients that have taken Zoloft, Effexor, Wellbutrin, and Paxil during pregnancy is “what is my claim worth?” An understandable question, we need more information to provide you with an answer, we need to speak with you directly.  During your consultation, we will ask questions about the birth defect that your child was born with, their medical bills to-date, if they are likely to recover, and what their future medical bills may be.  Your doctor can help to answer many of these.  Next, we will need to know how their birth defect has impacted your life.  For example, if you had to quit your job to take care of your child, you could be entitled to compensation for these lost wages.  We will factor in all details when building a case that maximizes the compensation you and your child can receive.  To discuss your case in further detail, call and schedule a free consultation with the Garmon Law Firm.

 

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