Defective Products

Zimmer Holdings’ Purchase of Biomet May Speed Up Settlement Negotiations

On April 24, 2014, Zimmer Holdings announced that it will purchase Biomet, Inc., for $13.35 billion. The sale is expected to go through by the first quarter of 2015.

Zimmer Holdings has agreed to include Biomet’s “net debt” in the purchase. In the meantime, Biomet is being sued nationally and globally over its Magnum M2a Hip Replacement System. The pending sale may be one reason Biomet agreed to a $56 million settlement of all its U.S. Magnum M2a lawsuits in an effort to reduce its net debt.

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Yaz and Yazmin Birth Control Lawsuits Settled for Nearly $403 Million

In a newsletter to its stockholders, Bayer, the manufacturer of the Yaz and Yasmin birth control pills, has announced that it has settled 1,877 Yaz and Yasmin lawsuits for a total of $402.6 million. There are still nearly 12,000 lawsuits pending against Bayer.
The Yaz and Yasmin lawsuits have been filed after women who’ve taken these birth control pills experienced serious blood clots. According to Bloomberg Business Week, “Since 2009, the German drugmaker has faced a wave of litigation over the birth-control pills. Lawyers suing the company cited FDA reports of at least 50 deaths tied to the pills from 2004 to 2008. Plaintiffs’ lawyers contend in court filings that Bayer officials marketed the contraceptives for unapproved uses and misled women about their risks.
The cases filed in federal courts were consolidated before U.S. District Judge David Herndon in East St. Louis, Illinois, for pretrial proceedings.”
Bayer is clearly anticipating future Yaz and Yasmin lawsuit settlements since it has put aside $610.5 million.
Since news of health issues surrounding the Yaz and Yasmin products first surfaced, the FDA has issued warnings that these birth control pill may triple the risk of blood clot issues among women who take these pills. Business Week further noted, “Pills like Bayer’s Yasmin, which contain a synthetic hormone called drospirenone, will have warning labels saying researchers found they may triple the risk for clots.
The FDA examined data on more than 835,000 women who took pills containing drospirenone, including Bayer’s Yasmin line, according to the FDA report. Yasmin was the No. 4 oral contraceptive in the U.S. in 2011, with 4.6 percent of the market as of September, according to data from IMS Health.”
In spite of the Yaz and Yasmin lawsuits and the serious health concerns, the pills remain a top seller and income generator for Bayer. In 2011, Bayer contraceptives generated $1.1 billion in sales.

Kava Kava lawsuit to be filed

I will be filing a lawsuit in Orlando this Tuesday December 19, 2006 against Nutraceutical Corporation and Chamberlin Foods of Orlando for their manufacturing and distribution of the dangerous kava kava supplement. Kava Kava, a plant indigenous to the South Pacific is used as a ceremonial drink in the South Pacific but can lead to liver toxicity and death. Kava Kava is a dangerous product that should have been removed from the market years ago.

Bausch & Lomb’s Failure to Report

According to a federal warning letter, Bausch & Lomb, the maker of ReNu contact lens solution, failed to report more than 35 foreign cases of fungal eye infection. According to an Associated Press report, “Bausch & Lomb didn’t report the 35 serious injury reports by April 7, as required by law, after Singapore health officials had alerted the Rochester, N.Y. company, the Food and Drug Administration said in the letter. The reporting failure occurred after the company had suspended sales of its ReNu with MoistureLoc solution in Singapore.”

Computer Battery Fires and Consumer Safety

In the midst of the latest terror threat, a little known safety problem has taken front and center. In a story published in the Wall St. Journal, Dell Inc. has recalled 4 million of its computers due to safety issues with notebook computer batteries that overheat and cause fires. Dell has received six reports from consumers about batteries overheating, resulting in property damage to furniture among other things, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. No injuries were reported.

Taser Gunned Down

Stun gun maker Taser International Inc. has agreed to pay $20 million dollars to settle lawsuits against its products. After initially stating that it would fight the lawsuits to the bitter end, the company now says it’s best to settle the cases and move on. The lawsuits have claimed that the company overstated the safety of the stun gun.

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