More than half a million American women have used Essure to prevent pregnancy since the birth control system’s release in 2002. The Essure birth control system consists of two metal coils that doctors implant in each fallopian tube, causing scar tissue to develop. The scar tissue then prevents fertilization.
Bayer pharmaceuticals, which bought the device’s original manufacturer, Conceptus, in 2013, touted that the device was a non-invasive form of permanent birth control. Bayer claimed that the device was nearly 100% effective, and had a quick recovery time.
However, thousands of women are disagreeing. They claim that the device ruined their lives; causing them permanent disease, perforated organs, and severe pelvic pain.
The FDA has received more than 5,000 reports about Essure since its release in 2002, many of the women filed lawsuits against the manufacturer.
Women File Suit Against Bayer
Women who have suffered severe side effects after using the Essure birth control system claim that their health problems were ignored by doctors and the FDA. The victims claim that Bayer failed to warn them of the potential side effects.
Kim Myers told BBC News in a recent interview that she suffered severe pelvic pain for three years before getting a hysterectomy. Myers claimed that the pain put stress on her marriage.
“I have never in my life felt discriminated against like I have with this whole thing with Essure.” Myers told BBC. “[After I complained, the doctor] told me ‘you’re a silly little woman, you’re hormonal.’ That’s the furthest thing from the truth.”
More recently in September of 2015, Tanya De La Paz filed suit against Bayer after one of her fallopian tubes was perforated during the Essure procedure. She went to the hospital due to severe bleeding. After returning again for a second procedure, she suffered constant pain. When she returned to the doctor for a follow up, the examination found that the coil in her right fallopian tube was broken.
Bayer advised De La Paz’s physician to surgically remove the right fallopian tube as well as the broken coil. The left coil remained implanted. De La Paz continued to suffer daily pain, heavy bleeding, and stomach issues. She scheduled surgery to remove the left coil at the end of 2015.
According to De La Paz’s Lawsuit, Bayer “not only actively and fraudulently concealed adverse reports of migrations and perforations from the plaintiff, but also from the FDA.”
Potential Risks and Prognosis After Essure Side Effects
Victims of the Essure birth control system have taken to social media, calling themselves “E-sisters” to share their negative experiences with the device. One Facebook group called “Essure Problems” Has about 27,000 members.
The Essure Birth control system comes with both short-term and long-term risks. Short-term risks include injury to the bowel, bladder, or ureters during surgery. Less common problems include fallopian tube collapse, kidney failure, heart attack, and stroke.
The most common problem reported was pain. According to one Essure study, 85% of women suffer moderate-to-severe pain after undergoing a hysterectomy. To manage the pain, doctors use morphine or other injectable painkillers as well as pain pills.
Long-term complications from hysterectomy may also affect the bladder. Many women require other dangerous procedures in order to treat the issues. Most notably, transvaginal mesh implants.
Is the Essure Lawsuit a Class Action?
Currently, it is not likely that Essure litigation will be handled as a class action, (meaning that a small group of individuals will represent the interest of a large group, and the results obtained by the small group are binding to the large group.) Instead, women are filing lawsuits individually against Bayer.
If you have been injured after using the Essure Birth Control system, we encourage you to call our office at 314-444-4444. Consultations at Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers are always 100% free and confidential. There is absolutely no obligation to sign on with our firm after having a consultation. That’s one of the ways Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers puts YOU first.