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Too Little Too Late: Bayer Announces it Will End Essure Sales in the United States

On July 20, 2018, Bayer announced it will be discontinuing the sale of the Essure birth control implant by the end of the year. All we can say at Rourke & Blumenthal is ‘what took you so long?’ Since 2002 when Essure was introduced as a birth control option in the United States all the way through the end of 2017, there have been nearly 27,000 reports of adverse events to the FDA. These adverse events include perforations of the uterus and fallopian tube, severe bleeding, miscarriages, and even death. An estimated 16,000 lawsuits have currently been filed by women who’ve reported severe injuries as the result of Essure.

While Bayer has steadfastly claimed that Essure is safe and effective, the scientific evidence against this position has steadily increased. Indeed, in 2016, the FDA ordered placement of a “black box warning” on the product package that warned of the injury risk, including that the implant could travel into the abdomen and pelvic cavity, possibly requiring surgical removal. While the FDA’s requirement of a black box warning should be applauded, its failure to ban Essure should not. Sadly, the United States is the only country where the device is still being sold. Bayer has stopped selling it in England, Brazil, Canada, France, and several other countries. At long last, the U.S. will join the ranks of countries where Essure is not sold by the end of the year. For more information on the Essure device, see: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/20/health/bayer-essure-birth-control.html.

Our Columbus personal injury attorneys at Rourke & Blumenthal stand ready to assist women who have been injured by the Essure implant, as well as victims of other dangerous drugs and defective medical devices. We also call on agencies like the FDA to be more diligent about taking fast action when it becomes clear that a drug or device is much more dangerous to users than originally anticipated.