For well over a decade, the lawyers of Watts Guerra have taken a leading role in bringing justice to the victims of bad pharmaceutical drugs and medical products.
In 2001, Mikal Watts and others tried the first case in the country against Sulzer Orthopedics, Inc., alleging that three elderly women were subjected to multiple hip replacement surgeries because oil left on Sulzer hip implants required them to be removed. A jury found Sulzer guilty of both negligence and gross negligence, and awarded the three women $15.5 million. Our attorney’s fees were $2,090,000, our litigation expenses were $735,713, and net client recoveries were $2,424,287.
Since this case, we have continued to successfully resolve cases against medical product manufacturers for their defective products, including cases against the manufacturers of post-surgical pain relieving devices for skin damage caused thereby, against Guidant for its defective defibrillators, against Depuy for its defective hip implants, against Kugel for its bad mesh patches, against Renu for its bad eye solutions and against the defective birth control product known as Ortho Evra.
In 2003, Mikal Watts obtained the first plaintiffs’ verdict in the country against Pfizer/Warner-Lambert for that company’s inappropriate marketing of the diabetes drug, Rezulin. After a trial lasting several weeks, the jury awarded our client $43 million in actual damages for the damage to her liver caused by Rezulin, and assessed $100 million in punitive damages to punish the company for its grossly negligent conduct. Our attorney’s fees were $4,200,000, our litigation expenses were $658,245, and net client recoveries were $5,641,755.
In the mid-2000s, the lawyers of Watts Guerra pursued lawsuits against American Home Products on behalf of thousands suffering heart damage from the diet drug Fen-Phen. American Home Products paid the victims of Fen-Phen. At the same time, we settled thousands of claims against Eli Lilly involving its drug, Zyprexa. Overall, Lilly paid to settle such cases nationwide. Later, we filed thousands of lawsuits against Merck for those suffering heart attacks after taking its pain-relieving drug, Vioxx. After eleven trials, including two tried by our lawyers, Merck settled these cases. Out lawyers subsequently settled the cases of those suffering heart attacks after taking similar drugs, Celebrex and Bextra
In 2010, a federal multi-district litigation Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee hired Mikal Watts to try the first trial in the country against Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., involving its drug Levaquin. During the trial, we illustrated for the jury that the drug Levaquin caused tendinitis, inflammation and soreness to the Achilles tendon, making ruptures caused by that drug a virtual epidemic.
After a multi-week trial in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the Plaintiff, finding Ortho-McNeil guilty of both negligence and gross negligence. The United States Court of Appeals affirmed the negligence finding of the jury.
In 2012, a federal district court judge appointed Mikal Watts and four others as plaintiffs’ co-lead counsel in the litigation against Boehringer-Ingelheim for its blood thinning drug, Pradaxa. Within just 22 months, Watts and others had completed the discovery of the case, and achieved a nationwide settlement
Overall, our recoveries for our own clients in litigation brought for bad drugs and medical products exceeds $819 million. Of these recoveries in bad drug and medical products cases, total attorneys fees were $308,915,115, the litigation expenses withheld totaled $17,094,722, and net client recoveries were $494,506,657.
|Case Type||Injury||Settlement Amount||Attorney Fees||Expenses||Net to Client|
|Medical Product||Bladder Cancer||44,161,176||17,404,496||1,372,464||25,384,216|
|Prescription Drug||Heart Damage||121,633,993||48,123,921||5,454,392||68,055,680|
|Prescription Drug||Internal Bleeding||104,392,397||41,429,318||2,878,668||60,084,411|
|Medical Product||Skin Death||48,573,000||19,102,928||2,546,872||26,923,200|
|Medical Product||Cardiac Injury||15,263,274||5,930,114||187,156||9,146,004|
|Prescription Drug||Heart Damage||13,137,899||5,297,836||640,091||7,199,972|
|Prescription Drug||Brain Injury||11,200,000||4,480,000||513,750||6,206,250|
|Prescription Drug||Liver Damage||10,500,000||4,200,000||462,741||5,837,259|
|Medical Product||Brain Injury||10,205,688||3,893,181||234,581||6,077,926|
|Medical Product||Hip injury||11,408,750||4,350,807||226,930||6,831,013|
|Medical Product||Abdominal Hernias||7,636,698||3,594,742||288,688||3,753,268|
|Medical Product||Heart Damage||515,203||170,179||4,713||340,311|
|Medical Product||Heart Damage||222,067,947||70,839,224||151,228,722|
|Medical Product||Addiction/Colon Damage||4,837,000||1,237,000||247,580||3,352,420|
|Medical Product||Heart Damage||3,655,000||1,462,000||116,132||2,076,868|
|Medical Product||Eye Injury||3,500,000||1,373,200||37,755||2,089,045|
|Medical Product||Liver Injury||2,775,000||1,065,000||78,840||1,631,160|
|Medical Product||permanent physical injuries||2,750,000||1,070,000||2,130||1,677,870|
|Medical Product||Eye Injury||1,250,000||500,000||96,215||653,785|
|Medical Product||Cardiac Injury||554,422||221,769||37,987||294,666|
|Medical Product||Injury to Fetus||500,000||185,482||22,049||292,469|
|Prescription Drug||Liver Damage||700,000||280,000||139,883||280,117|
|Medical Product||Mesh Replacement/Removal||5,873,499||2,458,623||99,629||3,315,247|
|Medical Product||Hip Replacement||780,000||295,062||7,577||477,361|
|Medical Product||Incomplete Quadriplegic||700,000||–||636,765||63,235|
|Medical Device Defect||Death||1,200,000||480,000||62,217||657,783|
|Settlement Amount||Attorney Fees||Expenses||Net to Client|