There is no way to estimate an average for the amount you might receive for a hernia mesh settlement. The settlement is entirely dependent on the details of your case, such as the extent of your pain and suffering and the degree to which the complications from the hernia mesh have impacted your life. If you are, for example, permanently disabled because of the impact the hernia mesh has had on you, you may receive a much higher settlement than if you only suffered some minor pain and discomfort.
The extent of your medical costs and any wages you missed as a result of the hernia mesh implant also play a role in the amount you could potentially recover in a lawsuit. If you spent a substantial amount of time away from work and missed out on promotional opportunities as a result of your lost wages, that could be factored into a settlement as well. In general, the greater your suffering from your hernia mesh complications, the more your settlement could potentially be.
Types of Hernia Mesh
Hernia repairs are common. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), more than one million hernia repairs are performed every year in the United States.
Because hernias have a high rate of recurrence, surgeons often use hernia mesh to strengthen the repair and reduce the chances of recurrence. However, a 2016 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) confirms that long-term success of hernia mesh may be offset in part by mesh-related complications.
Hernia mesh can be divided into a number of different categories:
- Coated hernia mesh: There are some methods of performing hernia repairs that cause the hernia mesh to come into direct contact with the intestines. Manufacturers of coated hernia mesh—which may be coated with absorbable fatty acids, cellulose, or collagen—claim these coatings prevent adhesions. Complications may include chronic pain or even bowel obstruction.
- Animal-derived hernia mesh: This type of hernia mesh product is made from animal products, typically the skin or intestine of a pig or cow. The animal tissue is processed and disinfected to be safe for use as a medical device. This type of hernia mesh is absorbable.
- Synthetic hernia mesh: This type of hernia mesh is comprised of woven or non-woven sheets made of synthetic material. They can be absorbable, non-absorbable, or a combination of both.
- Absorbable hernia mesh: This type of hernia mesh is designed to degrade over time. The idea is that the tissue repairs itself to support the hernia repair, so the hernia mesh does not need to remain in place after a period of time.
- Non-absorbable hernia mesh: This type of hernia mesh product is designed to remain in place permanently. It does not degrade over time but is meant to provide permanent reinforcement for the hernia repair.
Recoverable Damages After a Hernia Mesh Claim
The average hernia mesh settlement varies from case to case, and we cannot predict the amount of compensation you might be able to recover in a hernia mesh claim. Thousands of claims have been filed already and many more people likely have a valid claim. The amount of compensation you may recover depends on the details of your individual case.
Some possible types of recoverable damages include:
- Medical costs: This includes money that you pay for hospitalization, doctor’s examinations, surgical procedures, medications, diagnostic tests, and the cost of assistive devices such as wheelchairs and walkers.
- Pain and suffering: Damages from pain and suffering refer to any discomfort and limitations you may experience as a result of your hernia mesh claim. If you lost your quality of life, for example, that would be included as pain and suffering. This is a non-quantifiable loss, which means it can be challenging to determine the economic value for your pain and suffering. A lawyer can help you determine an appropriate amount based on your case.
- Lost wages and future earnings: If you miss work as a result of your injuries, this can factor into your settlement. It will also be taken into consideration if you are unable to return to work or if you are unable to do the same type of work because of a permanent disability you sustained from hernia mesh complications.
- Loss of consortium: If someone dies as a result of complications associated with their hernia repair—and, specifically, the hernia mesh used in the surgery—the surviving spouse may be entitled to compensation as a result of being deprived of the love, affection, and comfort of their partner.
- Punitive damages: These are uncommon in personal injury cases but are sometimes awarded if the judge feels that the defendant displayed a disregard for the health and safety of consumers. Punitive damages are intended as a punishment rather than as a greater award for the plaintiff.
A Hernia Mesh Lawyer Can Help
If you or a loved one is hurt or in pain because of complications that stem from hernia mesh, you have the right to hold the manufacturer responsible for your losses. For a free review of your hernia mesh claim and to find out what options you may have, contact Gacovino & Lake today at (631) 600-0000.