Johnson & Johnson Ignored FDA Order to Halt Sales of Gynecare Prolift Vaginal Mesh Device
June 28, 2012 Business News(PRLEAP.COM) (New York, NY, June 28, 2012) The Rottenstein Law Group, which represents clients with claims stemming from the side effects and injuries caused by vaginal mesh, has learned that Johnson & Johnson, the parent company of Ethicon, which manufactured and sold the Gynecare Prolift vaginal mesh device, ignored an order issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requesting that the company stop marketing the device, according to New Jersey State Court documents that were recently made public.
According to a June 26 article that appeared on Bloomberg.com, the FDA told Johnson & Johnson in a letter dated August 24, 2007, to stop selling the Gynecare Prolift until the agency had decided whether the device should be considered "substantially equivalent" to other vaginal mesh devices on the market-a classification that would have allowed Ethicon to market the Gynecare Prolift without submitting another application to the FDA, according to the June 26 Bloomberg piece. Instead of waiting for the FDA to make that determination, Johnson & Johnson began selling the Gynecare Prolift in 2005.
The device wasn't approved by the FDA until May 2008, after the agency and Johnson & Johnson had discussed at length the FDA's concerns about the Prolift, which included the device's "potential[ly] high risk for organ perforation" when it was inserted transvaginally to help stabilize weakened pelvic muscles, the Bloomberg article reports.
Johnson & Johnson marketed the Prolift several years before the FDA cleared it for sale despite the fact that the FDA's August 2007 letter stated, "If you market the device without conforming to…requirements, you will be in violation of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act," the Bloomberg article states.
The FDA's August 2007 letter was made public along with a group of documents previously submitted under seal by attorneys representing plaintiffs in vaginal mesh lawsuits brought before the New Jersey State Court in Atlantic City (In re Pelvic Mesh/Gynecare Litigation, No. 6341-10 (N.J. Super Ct.), and In re Pelvic Mesh Litigation/Bard No. L-6339-10 (N.J. Super. Ct.)). As a law firm representing women in these vaginal mesh cases and others in West Virgina (MDL No. 2325, MDL No. 2326, MDL No. 2327), the Rottenstein Law Group sincerely hopes that Johnson & Johnson and other medical device manufacturers will take special pains to heed FDA communications and regulations from now on.
Anyone seeking more information about vaginal mesh can visit the Rottenstein Law Group's Vaginal Mesh Lawsuit Information Center at www.vaginalmeshlawsuit.com . The site has vital information about the dangers of this medical device, along with easy-to-use social media features that allow for easy sharing on sites like Facebook and Twitter. Visitors are also encouraged to link to their own Web sites and blogs in order to spread the word about defective medical products and dangerous drugs.
About the Rottenstein Law Group
The Rottenstein Law Group is a New York-based law firm that represents clients in mass tort actions. The firm was founded by Rochelle Rottenstein, a lawyer with over two decades of experience in compassionate representation of clients in consumer product injury, mass tort, and class action law suits. For more information, please visit their Web site, or call (888) 9-ROT-LAW.
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