It’s been a little while since we’ve written about Mirena here on the Lopez McHugh blog. That doesn’t mean, however, that the problems with the device have subsided.
One of three hormonal IUDs available on the American contraception market, Mirena’s history of complications is long, and continues to grow. As it stands at the moment, thousands of lawsuits have been filed against against Bayer Healthcare for injuries suffered as a result of Mirena complications.
Those injuries range from moderate discomfort to the debilitating and much more serious. Perforation of the uterus has been reported as has device migration, damage to other organs, and removal procedures so complicated that they have required surgery.
This is a far cry from the simple answer to birth control portrayed by Mirena’s marking material. Described by the manufacturer as a “hassle-free” method of birth control, Mirena has caused harm and injury to women across the country while Bayer has reaped over a billion dollars from Mirena sales.
Initial attempts to consolidate Mirena cases into a multidistrict litigation were resisted by Bayer but the list of cases eventually grew so large that consolidation was the only way to deal with the volume. That process formally began in 2013 with depositions starting in 2014.
Some 70,000 complaints had been filed about Mirena with the FDA since 2000.
Attorneys for Bayer are working hard to stop as many of these cases from going to trial as possible. Late last year, a federal judge tossed 10 suits out of the Mirena MDL on two separate technicalities. Three cases had let the statute of limitations expire while the other seven were filed in spite of missing specific documents required by the court.
With a loss having devastating consequences for both sides, the Mirena case against Bayer promises to be a long, hard slog through the legal system. Over 3000 plaintiffs are now participating in MDLs against Bayer, hoping to have their day in court. The outcomes of the coming bellwether trials involving just a few will set the stage for the potential outcomes of thousands.