The federal judge overseeing thousands of hernia mesh lawsuits filed against C.R. Bard, Inc. and its Davol, Inc. subsidiary has denied defense motions seeking to strike supplemental expert reports submitted in advance of an upcoming bellwether trial.
According to an Order issued on March 10th in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio, Judge Edmund A. Sargus refused to strike a supplemental report and reliance list submitted by Dr. David Grischkan, a plaintiff’s expert schedule to testify on causation during the litigation’s first trial. However, the defense will be permitted submit their own expert report refuting the witness’s findings.
In a second Order, Judge Sargus did agree to strike most of one report submitted by Dr. Ahmed El-Ghannam, but refused to toss a second report he authored. Dr. El-Ghannam will also testify for the plaintiff during the first trial, at which time he will address issues pertaining to the design and manufacture of Bard’s polypropylene hernia mesh products, as well as the application of the devices and their interaction with the human body, including the alleged lack of biocompatibility.
Nearly 2,500 Bard hernia mesh lawsuits are currently pending in the multidistrict litigation now underway in the Southern District of Ohio. All of the current cases were filed on behalf of patients who experienced hernia recurrence and other debilitating complications due to the allegedly defective nature the defendants’ hernia mesh products, including Composix E/X Mesh, Ventralex Hernia Mesh, Ventralight ST Mesh, Composix Mesh, Kugel Hernia Patch, CK Parastomal Patch, and the Modified Kugel Patch.
Plaintiffs claim that Bard and Davol were aware that the polypropylene used to manufacture their hernia mesh devices was biologically incompatible with human tissue and not suitable for permanent implantation. Yet the companies continued to market the products as safe and effective options for hernia repair and failed to warn doctors and patients about their alleged risks.
The federal litigation’s first trial will involve Ventralight ST mesh and is currently scheduled to begin on May 11, 2020. Two additional Bard hernia mesh lawsuits are set to go before juries in July and September 2020.
As bellwether cases, the verdicts in these three upcoming trials could provide insight into how other juries might rule hernia mesh lawsuits involving Bard’s devices.