Contraceptive device Essure is not as safe as Nevada women have been misled to believe. Thousands of women across the U.S. have suffered complications such as perforated organs and unplanned pregnancies.
- hospital bills and long-term care,
- lost earnings,
- loss of future earnings,
- pain and suffering, and/or
- wrongful death
Following their injury, Nevada Essure victims have two (2) years to file a negligence lawsuit. Note that these types of cases rarely go to trial; most end with a settlement reached out of court.
In this article, our Las Vegas personal injury attorneys answer frequently-asked-questions about Nevada Essure lawsuits, including negligence claims, standards of proof, and statutes of limitations. Click on a topic to jump to that section:
- 1. What can I do if I got injured by Essure in Las Vegas, NV?
- 2. What money can I get?
- 3. Whom can I sue?
- 4. How do I prove my claim?
- 5. When can I sue?
- 6. Should I file my lawsuit in NV or join a federal class action?
- 7. What is Essure used for?
- 8. Has Essure been recalled?
- 9. Resources
- 10. Related "mass tort" device litigation
The typical route is to sue the drug's manufacturer for negligence. In order to win at trial, the plaintiff (victim) would have to demonstrate that:
- The defendant(s) owed the plaintiff a duty of care;
- The defendant(s) breached this duty;
- This breach caused the plaintiff's injury; and
- This injury resulted in damages.1
Essure's manufacturer was arguably negligent by failing to inform doctors and patients about the grave risks the device carries. Had the patients known of these risks, they might have elected a different form of permanent birth control, such as tubal ligation.
1.1. Essure injuries
Possible risks include:
- migration of the device, which can puncture the fallopian tubes and uterus
- itching and rashes from an allergic reaction to the nickel
- unintended pregnancy
Complications may sometimes require surgeries, removal of the device, and possibly a hysterectomy.2
At trial, the plaintiff's attorney would seek compensatory damages for:
- All doctor-related bills, including hospitalization, medications, and home health care,
- Pain and suffering,
- Lost wages, and/or
- Loss of future earnings
An attorney would also fight for punitive damages, which are meant to punish the defendant. Traditionally, punitive damages can be much greater than compensatory damages.
Women harmed by Essure can sue the device's manufacturer, Bayer. (Bayer's subsidiary Conceptus Inc. developed the device.) In some cases, plaintiffs have valid claims against their doctors as well.
Important evidence that would come into play in Essure lawsuits includes:
- The plaintiff's medical records, which show how the device adversely affected the plaintiff's health
- Expert medical testimony that draws a causal link between the device and the plaintiff's injuries
- Marketing materials that show patients were uninformed about the device's potentially catastrophic side effects
If the case goes to trial, the victim has to show that "it is more likely than not" that Bayer Pharmaceuticals wronged the plaintiff. The technical way of saying this is that the plaintiff has to prove by the "preponderance of the evidence" that the defendant was negligent. Fortunately, most cases settle without a trial.
Learn more about proving negligence in Nevada.
Victims have two (2) years after they suffer injuries from Essure to sue for negligence.3 But even if the injury occurred more than two years ago, victims are encouraged to seek legal counsel to discuss their options.
Instead of joining class actions, Essure victims might do better by joining a multi-district litigation (MDL). Like class actions, MDLs are an efficient way to proceed. But unlike class actions, the individual cases remain separate and can command distinct settlements that correlate with the unique facts of each plaintiff's injuries. An Essure MDL may be forming very soon.
Essure is a contraceptive device the FDA approved in 2002. It is a nickel and titanium coil that releases no hormones.
The doctor non-surgically inserts the device into a woman's fallopian tubes. The insertion process takes about ten minutes. It is meant to function as a permanent birth control device by blocking sperm from ever reaching the eggs.4
No, it is still on the market. But the FDA now requires the device to carry a "black box warning" label in order to inform women about its serious risks. This was partly in response to more than 5,000 grievances from Essure patients who reported severe pain, ectopic pregnancies, miscarriages, and even stillbirths.5
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Call a Nevada personal injury attorney...
Has Essure wreaked havoc on your body? Our Las Vegas personal injury attorneys will make every attempt to negotiate a very large settlement. Contact us at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673) for a FREE consultation. You pay us nothing unless we win the lawsuit.
- See, e.g. Scialabba v. Brandise Const. Co., 112 Nev. 965, 921 P.2d 928 (1996).
- FDA Activities - Essure.
- NRS 11.190.
- Essure official site.
- Debra Goldschmidt and Sandee LaMotte, FDA mandates new warnings, new data for Essure contraceptive device, CNN (March 1, 2016).