Our product liability lawyers are investigating potential lawsuits for women who have been injured by the Paragard intrauterine birth control device (IUD). While this medical device works well for many women, a lot of them have suffered complications when they got the device removed. Several studies have also linked certain types of birth control with a serious brain injury called “pseudotumor cerebri (PTC).”
There has been a fair amount of women that have filed product liability lawsuits after being diagnosed with PTC after using IUDs. Cogburn Law firm is currently investigating cases in which dangerous side effects including PTC and injuries during device removal have been linked to the Paragard IUD. You may be eligible to file a lawsuit if you or a loved one used a Paragard IUD and suffered serious brain injuries.
What is the Paragard IUD?
The Paragard Intrauterine Device (IUD) is designed to be implanted into a woman’s uterus to prevent pregnancy. It is a long-term, but reversible, form of contraception.
The device is T-shaped and made of flexible plastic and wrapped in copper wire and must be inserted by a qualified medical professional. Marketing for the device says it is more than 99 percent effective at preventing pregnancy and can do so for up to 10 years.
The device works by continually releasing small amounts of copper into the uterus. The copper is believed to help to prevent the sperm from reaching the egg, which prevents pregnancy. The Paragard IUD also causes changes in the lining of the uterus to help reduce the risk of implantation.
Dangers Associated With Paragard
The Paragard IUD has been linked to a variety of serious injuries and complications. Some of the most common side effects after insertion can include:
- Heavier and longer menstrual periods
- Bleeding or spotting between periods
- Stomach pain, cramps or back pain
- Severe menstrual pain
The device can also cause pelvic inflammatory disease, which is an infection of the uterus or other reproductive organs and is most likely to occur within the first 20 days of insertion. While antibiotics are usually prescribed for treatment, this type of infection can lead to other threatening conditions, such as infertility, ectopic pregnancy, chronic pelvic pain, and even death.
Users of copper intrauterine devices like Paragard are more likely to experience expulsion of the device compared to other types of IUDs. Full or partial expulsion could require surgery to remove the entire device, rendering the birth control ineffective.
Other dangers associated with Paragard IUD removal include:
- Device embedded in the uterus
- Perforation of the uterine wall
- Movement or migration of the device, leading to organ damage
- Device breakage during surgery
- Inflammation and injury from copper left in the body
- Scarring inside the uterus
- Possible hysterectomy or uterus removal
Since 2010, the FDA has received over 1,600 reports of device breakage. In some cases, the device failed well before the end of its expected lifespan, with the device becoming embedded in uterine tissue, fractured or broken into pieces upon removal and the copper wire completely missing. Many women have needed additional corrective surgery and suffered health complications as a result of these kinds of complications.
Birth Control Linked to Dangerous Brain Injury
Different types of IUDs have been associated with PTC, which is an injury where there is an increase of pressure inside the skull, with no clear explanation. It could be compared to a pseudotumor. Why? Because its symptoms are very similar to those that happen with a brain tumor, but there is no tumor at all. Symptoms include the following:
- Moderate to severe headaches
- Nausea, vomiting, dizziness
- Ringing in the ears
- Vision problems
- Neck, shoulder, or back pain
- Seeing light flashes
PTC is caused when too much cerebrospinal fluid collects around the brain. It may be because the body is producing too much or not enough of that fluid. The fluid levels rise, increasing pressure on the brain. This causes the optic nerve to swell up, affecting vision. This can be called “intracranial hypertension (ICH),” meaning the pressure of the cerebrospinal fluid is high.
Treatments for PTC typically include medications to help lower the amount of fluid on the brain, and other treatments depending on the symptoms. These may include surgical treatment on the optic nerve, or brain surgery.
Am I Eligible To File A Product Liability Case?
After an injury, you may be wondering if you can pursue legal action against the person or entity that harmed you. However, each situation is unique and complex. You may have a valid case, but we will not know that for sure until we get a better understanding of your situation. We may take several things into consideration, such as:
- The reason you decided to use this device versus other methods of contraception
- If the device had to be removed earlier than anticipated, perhaps due to expulsion
- Any complications during the removal of the device, including breakage or device migration
- Hospitalization needed to treat an infection or to surgically repair or remove a perforated organ
- Whether the device has been subject to a recall or safety alert
- Warnings issued about the risks of the implanted device
Determining liability in defective medical device cases can be complicated without consulting an experienced lawyer. We are ready to answer any questions or concerns you may have during a free consultation. There is no risk in calling us to learn more about your possible legal options.
What Forms of Compensation May Be Available?
The compensation you may be able to recover will depend on the details of your particular situation. We encourage you to contact the experienced attorneys at our firm to discuss the possible value of your claim.
There are several economic and non-economic damages that can arise in defective medical device cases:
- Medical expenses – These could include hospital and doctor visits, surgery costs, ultrasound imaging, antibiotics to treat infections, physical therapy and future medical expenses to cover ongoing care.
- Loss of wages – This may include lost wages or profits from missing work due to an injury and any income in the future one would have earned had the injury not affected the ability to work.
- Pain and suffering – You may be eligible for compensation for the pain, suffering, anguish, or loss of enjoyment of life resulting from the injury. These damages are hard to calculate without legal help.
- Loss of consortium – If an injury has had a negative impact on one’s relationship with his or her spouse or partner, these damages could help cover loss of companionship, loss of affection and loss of support.
There are many different forms of compensation that may be available to victims of defective medical devices. However, proving the value of these losses is very challenging without the help of a licensed attorney.
File a Paragard IUD Lawsuit With Cogburn Law
You may be eligible to file a lawsuit to recover damages if you or a loved one used a Paragard IUD and suffered serious brain injuries. Cogburn Law is currently investigating these cases and encourages you to contact us today at (702) 986-0874.