Injuries that stem from acts involving other people or motor vehicle accidents are not uncommon throughout the United States. The news is filled with reports about either a car accident that occurred in one city or someone being hurt while working at a coal mine in West Virginia. However, individuals might also be injured due to defective products, such as the transvaginal mesh which has been mentioned in numerous news reports and journals. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, a conference regarding various transvaginal mesh lawsuits was recently held in West Virginia. Apparently, there are thousands of cases involving the medical device underway in the state, and the individuals involved in those cases claim that the devices have a design defect that caused their injuries.
Years of complaints about transvaginal mesh products
For years, vaginal mesh products have been a great concern. In 2008, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released a notice concerning the mesh, stating that the Administration had received over 1,000 complaints about the product within a three-year period. Once again in 2011, the FDA issued another alert to consumers, stating that it had received almost 2,900 more reports regarding complications associated with surgical mesh implants.
The law regarding design defects
Courts in West Virginia have long found that if a product is not reasonably safe for its intended purpose because of a design flaw, then that product is defective. To be more specific, the elements that must be proven in a design defect claim are:
- The product was not reasonably safe for its intended use
- The unsafe nature of the product was due to a design defect
- The defect was the proximate cause of the person’s injury
The court further notes that as part of the first element noted above, reasonably safe means that the safety of the product should have been tested by a reasonably prudent manufacturer at the time of manufacturing and a risk-utility analysis should have been used to figure out whether the design was reasonable for its intended purpose.
More often than not, many products, such as medical devices, get pushed through too quickly. Any defective product is a serious issue; however, defective medical devices can harm the health and safety of millions of individuals who might use the device. Accordingly, it is crucial that such devices are made safe to use, and patients should be adequately forewarned of any associated risks.
Anyone who has been injured by a product due to its defective design or any other reason should seek the assistance of a knowledgeable attorney.