On July 2nd, the recent lawsuit against the manufacturer of laparoscopic power morcellators was expected to reach the first trial, but instead has been settled for an undisclosed amount.
Scott Burkhart, whose wife, Donna, died in February 2013, filed the case against device maker Lina Medical ApS. According to the lawsuit, the 53-year old had a power morcellation hysterectomy 11 months earlier for heavy bleeding. She learned after the surgery that she had a hidden cancer called leiomyosarcoma.
Last year, the Food and Drug Administration warned that power morcellators can spread and worsen these cancers, which can’t be reliably detected before the surgery. The drill-shaped power tools use a rotating blade to slice tissue for removal through small incisions.
The lawsuit was expected to reach trial later this year. Francois Blaudeau, an attorney for Mr. Burkhart and also represents other clients with morcellator claims, confirmed the settlement. He said the settlement was reached last week and requires approval in the U.S. District Court for Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The lawsuit, which was filed in March 2014, alleged that Lina Medical failed to warn about the risk of spreading cancer.
Publicity over the risks and FDA’s intervention and the “black box” warning on power morcellators have sharply condensed morcellator use. The FDA said they shouldn’t be used in the vast majority of women. Many hospitals and health insurers have banned or clamped down on use of the device, including Johnson & Johnson, who voluntarily left the market in 2014.
If you or a loved one has had a hysterectomy with the power morcellator procedure and had cancer spread as a result, you deserve compensation. Contact us here for a free case evaluation today.