If you have lost a loved one after they experienced complications from hernia mesh, you can file a lawsuit on their behalf. You generally have two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit for a lost loved one, according to Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code § 16.003. Hernia mesh lawyers can assist you in navigating legal action against a surgical mesh manufacturer or healthcare professional.
Types of Hernias and How Hernia Mesh Causes Complications
According to Mayo Clinic, a hernia is an internal injury that happens when fatty tissue or an organ (like an intestine) breaks through weak parts of the muscle (like the abdominal wall). Although not inherently dangerous, the hernia can cause pain and discomfort, especially when bending over or coughing. Types of hernias include:
- Inguinal hernias – on the thigh
- Ventral hernias – on the abdomen
- Hiatal hernias – on the diaphragm
- Femoral hernias – on the groin
- Incisional hernias – from a surgical procedure
In certain circumstances, hernias become strangulated, which can be life-threatening. This is why many doctors recommend a surgical procedure to repair the hernia before it gets to this stage. Types of procedures include open surgery, non-invasive laparoscopic surgery, or even robotic surgery.
In essence, hernia repair surgery is meant to prevent further complications. As a result, losing someone you love to this condition is especially devastating. If you suspect your loss was preventable, you can explore legal action to find answers.
Hernia Mesh May Have Contributed to Your Loss
Hernia mesh, also known as surgical mesh, is a medical device often used by surgeons to support the surrounding tissue and help the weak spot heal after hernia surgery. Ideally, the mesh will also help prevent a recurrent hernia.
Some surgical mesh is meant to dissolve in the body, while non-absorbable mesh remains as a permanent implant. Some types of mesh are made from synthetic material, while others are biologic mesh or composite mesh.
While hernia mesh can help the body heal and prevent hernia recurrences, it comes with risks. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), defective hernia mesh products have been linked to the following serious complications:
- Bowel obstruction
- Organ or bowel perforation
- Adhesion to surrounding tissue
- Damaged tissue
- Chronic pain
Some of these issues are caused by mesh migration. This is when the mesh material moves from its original position to another part of the body. Mesh migration can cause issues like organ obstruction or even perforation. Other complications can arise from the mesh itself due to defects in or reactions to the material.
Poorly implanted or defective hernia mesh can require additional surgery for mesh removal and to correct any complications. For example, someone who suffered from an abdominal wall hernia and received a mesh for treatment may have to undergo abdominal surgery again for removal. Sadly, sometimes removing the mesh and treating the damage isn’t enough.
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Recourse for Families of Hernia Mesh Victims
While these defective mesh products are no longer on the market, that does not turn back the clock. These devices were out there, implanted in people who thought they were protecting their health by undergoing hernia repair surgery.
Families face devastating emotional and financial losses after mesh complications cause a loved one’s death. If this affected your family, you can pursue compensation for:
- Outstanding medical bills
- Burial and funeral costs
- Lost income
- Your pain and suffering
Damages don’t just cover costs after your loved one’s passing. Any attempts at medical intervention, such as mesh removal, additional hernia repair surgeries, and treatment for complications are eligible for reimbursement. In fact, your legal team can pursue compensation for any losses from the ordeal, past and future.
Filing Suit Against the Manufacturers of Hernia Mesh
The FDA has recalled several types of faulty mesh. These recalls can form the basis of legal action. Some manufacturers whose negligence may have contributed to your loved one’s passing include:
The surgeon can confirm if your family member’s implant was from a recalled manufacturer. Your lawyer can assess whether you should join a case against a manufacturer or if you qualify to start a new lawsuit against a different manufacturer.
These lawsuits have their own requirements and eligibility, but a lawyer can guide you through the process of starting a new one or joining an existing multidistrict litigation (MDL) case. Even if you aren’t sure if your loved one’s type of mesh qualifies, you can talk with a product liability attorney if you suspect a defect played a role.
Filing a Lawsuit for Medical Malpractice for Fatal Hernia Repair
If your loved one’s death was not due to the defective mesh itself, but the negligence of doctors, surgeons, nurses, or hospital administration, you can potentially file a medical malpractice suit for wrongful death.
Unlike a product liability lawsuit against mesh manufacturers, this lawsuit’s success depends on proving that your family member’s healthcare providers acted in an unreasonable and negligent way, causing your loved one’s death. For instance, the doctor may have made a mistake in their surgical technique, or a nurse may have failed to sterilize instruments.
If you feel that there are other parties to blame for your loved one’s death in addition to mesh manufacturers, your lawyer can walk you through your options for filing a medical malpractice suit.
How Hernia Mesh Lawyers Assist You
Personal injury lawyers take on the work of your loved one’s case and explain:
- Who in your family can file a lawsuit for your loved one
- How long you have to file in your specific case
- How to fill out and file any necessary paperwork and court documents
- The steps in a lawsuit and what to expect
- The differences between a class-action or multidistrict litigation and a medical malpractice case
- What evidence you need to support a hernia mesh suit and how to obtain it
Hernia mesh cases deal with specific medical procedures and techniques. Getting compensation can therefore hinge on specialized or intricate information. A medical malpractice attorney can work alongside experts in this field to ensure doctors and manufacturers don’t hide behind technicalities.
Let Loncar Lyon Jenkins Fight on Behalf of Your Loved One
Our firm has fought for the rights of Texans since 1988. With eight offices and 7,000 clients represented a year, we have the resources you need to build a strong case, all while offering you the personal attention you deserve.
Let us fight to recover the compensation you need after you lost your loved one. Call Loncar Lyon Jenkins today to receive your free consultation and learn if you can file a lawsuit on behalf of a loved one affected by hernia mesh.