BREAKING NEWS: VALSARTAN MDL CREATED & SENT TO JUDGE KUGLER IN THE DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY

On February 14, 2019, both class action and personal injury cases involving contaminated valsartan-containing drugs were consolidated into a multi-district litigation (MDL) in the District of New Jersey before the Honorable Robert B. Kugler.

Valsartan is a medication prescribed to treat high blood pressure and related conditions.  Recent investigations by the FDA revealed that pills distributed by at least four Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) manufacturers were contaminated with carcinogenic substances, called NDMA and NDEA.  As a result, both the US FDA and the European Medicines Agency (among other foreign regulatory agencies) predicted that some consumers who took these contaminated pills for a number of years will get cancer.

This MDL will be comprised of both personal injury cases, as well as class actions. As of the time the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) issued its order creating the MDL, there were approximately 40 cases filed.  The MDL includes all manufacturers of the recalled valsartan. For a list of these manufacturers, visit the FDA’s website.

The JPML determined that New Jersey was an appropriate venue for the litigation, primarily because many defendants have headquarters in New Jersey, and it is likely that both relevant documents and witnesses will be located in New Jersey as well.  Further, Judge Kugler previously presided over a litigation involving a different ARB drug, olmesartan (Benicar).

There is currently no decision on whether other angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs), such as irbesartan and losartan, will be included in this MDL.

GoldenbergLaw is currently accepting valsartan, losartan, and irbesartan cases.  To learn more about this litigation, please visit our valsartan page. You can also find out whether your medication has been recalled by visiting the FDA’s website.  If you or a loved one took one of these drugs and contracted liver, colorectal, stomach, intestinal, kidney, and pancreatic cancer, please contact us. We deliver the gold standard advocacy you deserve.

Partner Laura Pittner Appointed to PSC in Zimmer M/L Taper Hip MDL

GoldenbergLaw Partner Laura Pittner has been appointed to the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee (PSC) in the Zimmer M/L Taper hip Multidistrict Litigation (MDL). This occurred on December 14, 2018, by the Hon. Jesse M. Furman, United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York.

About Laura PittnerPartner Laura Pittner

Laura has extensive experience in hip device litigations and has led GoldenbergLaw’s defective hip practice in the Depuy ASR, Depuy Pinnacle, Biomet M2A, Wright Profemur, Conserve and Dynasty Hip Systems, Zimmer Durom Cup, Smith & Nephew Birmingham Hip, Stryker Rejuvenate, and Stryker LFIT V40 cases. Her leadership has resulted in millions of dollars of settlements recovered for our clients.

Laura has also helped in the leadership of several other mass torts litigations, including in Benicar, a heart pressure medication alleged to cause gastrointestinal injuries, and Farxiga, a diabetes drug alleged to cause serious diabetic ketoacidosis.

Laura has been with GoldenbergLaw since 2010. She is a knowledgeable leader in mass tort and product liability cases. In addition, her practice includes motor vehicle, chemical exposure, and premises liability cases. She is also the proud mother of twin boys Cecil and Odin.

Zimmer M/L Taper Hip Prosthesis and Versys Femoral Heads

The Zimmer M/L Taper and Kinectiv hip systems are comprised of the femoral components of an artificial hip device. The devices are designed to be made of up two pieces, the neck and stem, not dissimilar to the Stryker Rejuvenate hip device that was previously the subject of consolidated litigations that resulted in substantial settlements. While the Zimmer M/L devices have not yet been recalled, there have been several reports of early failure associated with corrosion and metal wear at the neck-stem interface requiring revision.

In December 2017, a verdict was secured against Zimmer, the maker of the M/L Taper device in a case tried by another law firm in New Mexico. The plaintiff in that case was awarded over $2,000,000.

Several M/L Taper cases have been filed in various state and federal courts across the country. In October 2018, the Judicial Panel ofMultidistrict Litigation ordered that Zimmer M/L Taper cases throughout the United States be consolidated in the Southern District of New York before the Honorable Paul Crotty. The first case management conference occurred on December 6, 2018. At that time, the proposed Plaintiffs’ leadership committee was approved.

Contact Us

GoldenbergLaw is currently investigating Zimmer M/L Taper cases and other defective hip replacement cases. If you or a loved one has been fitted with a defective hip replacement, contact GoldenbergLaw.

J&J Knew Talcum Powder Contained Asbestos

Johnson & Johnson knew for decades that there was asbestos in its talcum powder, according to a Reuters investigation released on December 14. This explosive development could dramatically impact the outcome for thousands of people who have filed lawsuits against J&J claiming that their mesothelioma or ovarian cancer were caused by J&J’s talcum powder.

The Reuters investigation examined a number of J&J internal documents and deposition and trial testimony, which “ shows that from at least 1971 to the early 2000s, the company’s raw talc and finished powders sometimes tested positive for small amounts of asbestos, and that company executives, mine managers, scientists, doctors and lawyers fretted over the problem and how to address it while failing to disclose it to regulators or the public.”

Furthermore, there’s evidence showing J&J withheld information from the FDA. In 1976, J&J assured the regulator that no asbestos “was detected in any sample” of talc produced between December 1972 and October 1973. However, between 1972 and 1975, three different labs found asbestos in its talc, and in one case the levels were reported as “rather high.”

In response to the Reuters investigation, J&J released a statement defending its signature product. The company stated, “Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder is safe and asbestos-free… Thousands of independent tests by regulators and the world’s leading labs prove our baby powder has never contained asbestos.”

Authorities like the World Health Organization identify no safe level of exposure to asbestos. Even exposure to small amounts of it can be enough to cause cancer.

The Reuters investigation strengthens the argument by plaintiffs across the country that consistent use of J&J’s talcum powder has contributed to their cancer diagnoses, as plaintiffs have repeatedly advanced the theory that the talcum powder at issue contains dangerous asbestos despite J&J’s claims to the contrary.

In total, there are over 11,700 talcum powder claims filed against J&J. In a case tried in St. Louis earlier this year, the jury awarded 22 plaintiffs $4.69 billion in damages. Needless to say, the impact of this shocking development will be felt in years to come in courtrooms across America.

GoldenbergLaw is investigating claims in which an individual was diagnosed with ovarian cancer or mesothelioma after years of extensive talcum powder use. Contact us. We deliver the Gold standard advocacy you deserve.

 

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