Lawsuits Filed Over Mirena and Serious Side Effects
Many women have experienced dangerous side effects from Mirena, an intrauterine device (IUD) used as a contraceptive. While serious side effects are “rare from a medical standpoint,” according to a recent article in Newsweek, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has found the rate of adverse effects to be “an acceptable rate and comparable to other forms of birth control,” it is important to consider whether this IUD is a defective medical product.
Is Mirena inherently defective? Patients who have filed claims against Bayer (the maker of Mirena) have not argued that Mirena “is flawed per se.” Rather, women who have used the IUD and have sustained severe injuries are contending that “Bayer should have done more to warn patients about worst-case-scenario side effects, rather than just mentioning it in the full prescribing information.” In other words, the “defect” may be a marketing defect, or a failure to warn about the dangers linked to the proper use of Mirena.
Indeed, the FDA recently reprimanded Bayer for some of its Mirena marketing practices, which minimized risks involved in use of the product. Specifically, Bayer organized “in-home IUD marketing events” with a social networking site called “Mom Central.” At these events, according to Newsweek, “a Bayer representative touted the romantic benefits of Mirena” and “failed to disclose the product’s risk.” While the program was discontinued, it represents a known marketing issue with Mirena.
There have been approximately 1,200 reported incidents in which women have experienced adverse effects from Mirena. Some of the severe side effects include: “perforation, migration, pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy and, in the most extreme cases...painful surgeries and even hysterectomy.” These adverse side effects have resulted in many lawsuits filed against Bayer.
Facts About Mirena and Other IUDs
Currently, there are three different kinds of intrauterine contraceptives available in the United States. Why do women choose IUDs over other forms of contraception? In short, they are generally more effective than most other kinds of birth control. According to Dr. Petra Casey, the director of the Mayo Clinic’s Contraception Practice, the failure rate for an IUD “is somewhere around 0.2 percent, compared to 5 to 7 percent with the pill.”
While IUDs can be effective birth control choices for many women, they can cause serious and even life-threatening side effects. If you have sustained personal injuries after using an IUD like Mirena, it is important to speak to a defective medical product lawyer about your case.