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Recalled Bard Avaulta Vaginal Mesh Turns Up on eBay

Defective Medical Devices

You can buy almost anything on eBay, right? Even transvaginal mesh implants that have been taken off the market.

DrugWatch reports that the Bard Avaulta polypropylene mesh has shown up on an eBay auction, including a Plus Posterior mesh. The price? $50. You can buy two Anterior Support System products for $200.

We’ve long known that you can buy surgical mesh on eBay, but this is different. The manufacturer, C.R. Bard, recalled the Avaulta Plus in July. That’s because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration wanted that manufacturer, as well as more than thirty others to begin conducting postmarket surveillance on the patients who had been implanted with this type of mesh.

The Avaulta Plus is the same type of mesh the Christine Scott had implanted on January 9, 2008 to treat pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and urinary incontinence (SUI). The Bakersfield, California woman had both the Bard posterior and anterior synthetic mesh implanted and says she immediately began having complications. Scott has endured eight surgeries and says she experiences daily pain, mesh erosion in the vagina and rectum, fecal incontinence, nerve damage and depression, among other complications.

She sued Bard and in July was awarded $5.5 million by a Bakersfield jury in the first of many cases to go to trial. Her husband shares $500,000 of that award because the couple’s intimacy has been ruined by the synthetic mesh.

Scott says the hardest part was having to keep quiet while watching women continue to be hurt. In 2010, an estimated 200,000 women had synthetic mesh implanted to treat stress urinary incontinence and she was prevented from speaking out.

The U.S. does not monitor devices after they are implanted, therefore does not know the actual complication rate. That’s what the FDA-ordered tests were supposed to find out.
According to its website, C.R. Bard, a subsidiary of Davol Inc. is “committed to sustainable responsibility with an emphasis on maximizing the positive impact on the health and wellness of society.”

Bard is also the company that produced the Kugel Mesh hernia patch which contained a plastic ring prone to breaking in some patients, causing devastating injuries and death. The company was the subject of litigation and recently settled 2,600 claims for $184 million.

In August, Judge Joseph R. Goodwin who is overseeing the pelvic mesh consolidated cases in federal court in the Southern district of West Virginia, set a trial date for the first federal lawsuit against Bard to begin June 24, 2013, pushed back from February 2013 to allow for additional discovery time.

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