A $100-million settlement involving NuvaRing, a birth-control device linked to sometimes-fatal side effects, has now been finalized after all parties involved in lawsuits have chose to opt into the agreement.
According to an Associated Press news report, U.S. District Judge Rodney W. Sippel approved the settlement in February.
However, Merck & Co. that manufactures the birth control device had the right to get out of the deal if 95 percent of eligible claimants opted in.
The lead attorney for the claimants told the judge that 95 percent of the threshold had been reached and the deal is final, to which Merck also agreed.
Approximately 3,800 claimants will share in the settlement.
Allegations of Faulty Design and Testing
NuvaRing, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2002, is a hormonal contraceptive in a flexible ring that slowly releases two different hormones into the vaginal wall.
The lawsuits allege faulty design and testing. Many of the plaintiffs also allege that Merck did not properly disclose the potential hazards of using these devices.
Some of the serious side effects linked to NuvaRing include blood clots, strokes and heart attacks, high blood pressure, heart disease and cancer of the breast and reproductive organs.
According to the lead attorney, 83 wrongful death claims were part of the lawsuits. Merck has not admitted fault and continues to insist that there is substantial evidence to show that NuvaRing is safe.
Defective Medical Device Cases
Victims of defective medical devices suffer not only significant adverse health effects, but also financial and emotional pressures as a result of not being able to earn a livelihood or being able to live a normal life.
Defective medical devices such as NuvaRing also have the potential to cause death.
When pharmaceutical or medical device companies fail to test their products properly, they put consumers in grave danger.
However, it is common for drug and medical device manufacturers to have products quickly tested and put in the market in order to maximize profits. Corporations that put profits over people should be held accountable.
If you have been the victim of a defective medical device such as NuvaRing, please contact an experienced medical product liability lawyer to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.