Bayer has said it is progressing with its settlement talks with attorneys for thousands of women who were injured by Essure birth control implants. According to news reports, the company announced that it has set aside $1.47 Billion for potential settlements involving 32,000 lawsuits in the United States. Bayer said in its second-quarter earnings report on Aug. 3 that discussions on potential settlements in connection with Essure “recently intensified and have made good progress in recent weeks.”
Essure and Its Side Effects
Essure is a birth control device consisting of two metal coils, which are non-surgically inserted into a woman’s fallopian tubes. The device works by triggering inflammation and scarring and closing the fallopian tubes to prevent pregnancies. However, thousands of women reported suffering debilitating and long-term complications from this device including chronic pain, heavy menstrual bleeding and organ damage.
Many even said that they got pregnant after getting the device. In many of these cases, women got Essure to avoid a tube-tying surgery for which they need to go under general anesthesia. There was a huge surge in complaints from women many of whom rallied around this issue and set up a Facebook page to discuss their problems with Essure.
Women and consumer advocates like Erin Brockovich got involved as well, and after much campaigning, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put a Black Box safety warning on Essure in 2015. Bayer stopped selling these implants worldwide in 2018. The lawsuits Bayer is facing currently allege a range of injuries from hysterectomy, organ perforation and pain to bleeding, unwanted weight gain, metal sensitivity, depression and unwanted pregnancy.
Compensation for Victims
A lot of these side effects are serious or long-term if not lifelong. Women who got these implants did so with the expectation of avoiding pain and side effects caused by tubal ligation and most importantly, to avoid pregnancy. However, based on complaints from thousands of women, it appears that the product did not work as intended.
In such cases, injured victims can seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, cost of surgeries, permanent injuries, disabilities, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced product defect lawyer will be able to fight for their rights and help ensure that they receive maximum compensation for their losses.