A California appeals court has upheld a lower court ruling that Johnson & Johnson must pay penalties to the state for deceptively marketing pelvic mesh implants for women, but reduced the amount by $42 million to $302 million.
Johnson & Johnson had appealed in 2020 after Superior Court Judge Eddie Sturgeon assessed the $344 million in penalties against Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon.
Sturgeon found after a non-jury trial that the company made misleading and potentially harmful statements in hundreds of thousands of advertisements and instructional brochures for nearly two decades.
The instructions for use in all of the company’s pelvic mesh implant packages "falsified or omitted the full range, severity, duration, and cause of complications associated with Ethicon’s pelvic mesh products, as well as the potential irreversibility and catastrophic consequences," Presiding Justice Judith McConnell of the appeals court said in a 3-0 ruling upholding the $302 million in penalties.
The products, also called transvaginal mesh, are synthetic and surgically implanted through the vagina of women whose pelvic organs have sagged or who suffered from stress urinary incontinence when they cough, sneeze or lift heavy objects.
Many women have sued the New Jersey-based company alleging that the mesh caused severe pain, bleeding, infections, discomfort during intercourse and the need for removal surgery.
Source: Fox News, 12 April 2022
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