The Mirena IUD, manufactured and marketed by Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, is the focus of yet another personal injury lawsuit. This time, a New Mexico woman alleges that she suffered serious injuries as a result of being implanted with the birth control device.
According to the complaint, the woman was implanted with the Mirena IUD in July 2006. At the time she was implanted with the device, there was no reason to suspect that the Mirena IUD had perforated her uterus, which is significant. As the lawsuit points out, Bayer’s warning label only mentions risks of spontaneous migration occurring after the Mirena is first placed in the uterus.
On June 23, 2010, the woman went to her doctor’s office complaining of pain. She underwent a laparoscopy the next day to remove the Mirena. The Mirena was discovered protruding through the fundus of the uterus.
This lawsuit seeks compensation for severe and permanent physical injuries, substantial pain and suffering, and economic loss due to medical expenses and lost wages. The lawsuit alleges that Bayer was aware that the Mirena IUD was defective, yet failed to warn of the risks.
The lawsuit also alleges that Bayer has a history of misrepresenting Mirena. In 2009, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Drug Marketing, Advertising, and Communications (DDMAC) contacted Bayer over its having made unsubstantiated claims about Mirena while failing to mention its risks in Bayer’s “Simple Style” program. The DDMAC criticized Bayer for a number of statements, including the assertion that Mirena helps women “look and feel great.”
Approved in 2000, Bayer’s Mirena IUD is a contraceptive meant to prevent pregnancy for up to five years. A small, plastic device attached to two strings, the MIrena is placed inside the uterus by a healthcare professional, where it releases the hormone levonorgestrel for up to five years. An October 2009 U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) press release indicates that the most serious side effects associated with the Mirena IUD include:
- Perforation of the uterine wall
- Embedment of the device in the uterine wall
- Intrauterine pregnancy
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Group A streptococcal sepsis
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
The Supreme Court of New Jersey recently reconsidered its previous decision and has moved to centralize Mirena IUD lawsuits in Bergen County, New Jersey. Superior Court Judge Brian R. Martinotti will manage them. Meanwhile, Raymond C. Silverman, a partner at the law firm Parker Waichman LLP, has been appointed Co-Lead Counsel in the Mirena IUD multicounty litigation centralized in Bergen County, New Jersey. Matthew J. McCauley, Senior Litigation Counsel at Parker Waichman LLP, was previously appointed Co-Lead Counsel in in the Mirena IUD multidistrict litigation (MDL) in New York. Mr. McCauley also co-chairs the American Association for Justice (AAJ) Mirena IUD Litigation Group. The Group is actively involved in exchanging educational materials and medical literature in order to best represent victims.
This lawsuit was filed on June 3, 2013 in the Superior Court of New Jersey Law Division, Morris County (Case No. BER L-4041-13). Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals was named as the defendant.