Endo – AMS

Endo International’s subsidiary, American Medical Systems (AMS), manufactures transvaginal mesh devices that allegedly injured tens of thousands of women. While AMS has settled a sizeable number of mesh lawsuits, thousands of cases still remain to be litigated.

Endo-AMS History

Endo began operations in 1997, with the acquisition of certain product lines from The DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Company.  Its international headquarters is located in Dublin, Ireland, while its U.S. operations re based in Malvern, PA.

Endo’s origins can be traced back to the founding of Intravenous Products of America in 1920. The company adopted the name Endo Pharmaceuticals 15 years later. In 1950, Endo began marketing the drug Percodan.

Endo was acquired by DuPont Merck in 1970. Four years later, Endo Laboratories was established as DuPont’s generic drugs division.

In 1997, three DuPont executives took part in a $277 million buyout, establishing the company known today as Endo International. The acquisition included all of Endo Laboratories’ generic products along with Percocet, Percodan and 10 other brand-name drugs. In 2000, Endo acquired Algos Pharmaceutical Corporation and became a publically traded company. By 2002, Endo had reached $1 billion in cumulative sales.

In 2010, Endo would acquire HealthTronics (later sold), Pennwest Pharmaceuticals and Qualitest Pharmaceuticals. Boca Pharmacal and Paladin Labs were acquired in 2014.

In 2011, American Medical Systems (AMS) was added to Endo’s portfolio. Founded in 1972 in Minnesota, AMS markets medical devices to treat pelvic and urologic disorders in men and women. Among other things, the company developed the first urinary sphincter for male incontinence. It also markets transvaginal mesh devices to treat pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence in women, including:

  • Apogee (no longer available in U.S.)
  • BioArc SP Sling
  • BioArc Transobturator Subfascial Hammock
  • Elevate
  • In-Fast Ultra Transvaginal Sling
  • IntePro Y-graft
  • MiniArc Precise Sling
  • MiniArc
  • Monarc Subfascial Hammock
  • Perigee
  • RetroArc Retropubic Sling
  • SPARC Sling

In August 2015, Boston Scientific Corp. acquired the AMS Men’s and Prostate Health business from Endo for a purchase price of up to $1.65 billion.

Transvaginal Mesh Litigation

In 2011, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) warned that transvaginal mesh devices had been linked to thousands of debilitating and life-changing complications.  In 2014, the agency announced it was seeking to re-categorize mesh used in prolapse repair as high-risk medical devices.

Tens of thousands of vaginal mesh lawsuits have since be filed against AMS on behalf of women who  allegedly suffered mesh erosion, scarring, adhesion, organ damage, chronic pain and infections due to the defective nature of the company’s products. In June 2013, AMS agreed to pay $54.5 million to settle an undisclosed number of those cases. However, it did not admit any liability for plaintiff’s injuries. In May 2014, AMS settled an additional 20,000 cases for a combined $830 million, again without admitting fault. However, as of May 2015, there remained more than 16,000 transvaginal mesh claims pending against AMS in a consolidated litigation underway in West Virginia federal court.

  1. Endo (N.D.) “Our Story” http://www.endo.com/about-us/history
  2. Endo (2015) “Endo Completes Divestiture of American Medical Systems’ Men’s and Prostate Health Businesses to Boston Scientific” http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/endo-completes-divestiture-of-american-medical-systems-mens-and-prostate-health-businesses-to-boston-scientific-300122781.html
  3. Bloomberg News (2014) “Endo pays $830 million to resolve vaginal-mesh suits” http://www.philly.com/philly/news/nation_world/20140501_Endo_pays__830_million_to_resolve_vaginal-mesh_suits.html#BU0Ke65PGUEoIHUF.99
Last Modified: June 2, 2016

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