Patient Sues Ethicon Over Stapler Misfire

On Wednesday a case was filed in the Eastern District of Louisiana by a patient and her husband against Ethicon Inc. and their parent company Johnson and Johnson. The case is regarding product liability for a surgical stapler misfire.

According to the complaint, the patient was undergoing surgical treatment for diverticulitis. The procedure to remove a portion of the colon was being performed laproscopically for a minimally invasive procedure. However, during the procedure, the defendant’s Echelon 29mm surgical stapler allegedly misfired, causing “extensive tissue damage in the colon and rectum” and requiring that the surgeon convert to a much more sophisticated procedure.

The more extensive procedure also allegedly caused post-surgical complications of blood transfusions, abscesses, and later surgery to fix a weakened abdominal and subsequent hernia. The plaintiffs cite to several reports and recalls in the complaint regarding this model of stapler.

The plaintiff is suing for product liability, design defect, failure to warn, negligence, and loss of consortium. The plaintiff is represented by the Gertler Law Firm and the Blair Law Office.