August 13, 2013 — The number of NuvaRing lawsuits against Merck & Co. has passed 1,500 claims, according to a Quarterly SEC Regulatory Filing. Plaintiffs are seeking damages for heart attacks, strokes, and other complications of blood clots.
All of the lawsuits allege that Merck and its subsidiary companies Organon and Schering-Plough failed to adequately design and manufacture NuvaRing.
Lawsuits also allege that the companies failed to adequately warn about the risk of Venous thromboembolism (VTE). This is a life-threatening medical condition that occurs when blood clots form in deep veins, usually in the lower legs. If these clots break loose, they can travel in the the bloodstream (called an “embolism”) and cut off circulation to a major internal organ.
Of the 1,500 NuvaRing lawsuits currently pending, approximately 1,285 are or will be pending in a Multi-District Litigation (MDL). The MDL is located in the U.S. District Court of Missouri before Judge Rodney Sippel (NuvaRing MDL #1964) and was established on August 22, 2008. Judge Sippel has ordered lawyers to begin selecting cases to go before a jury in the first bellwether trials. The first trial is expected to begin in January 2014.
Another 200 lawsuits are currently pending in a New Jersey NuvaRing Mass-Tort Litigation in Bergen County Superior Court of New Jersey before Judge Brian R. Martinotti. An additional 9 lawsuits are pending in other state courts.
The first NuvaRing lawsuit was originally scheduled to begin in New Jersey in June 2013, but Judge Martinotti granted Merck’s motion for summary judgment — a written request for a judgement based on evidence gathered during the pre-trial discovery process before the lawsuit goes to trial.
Serious NuvaRing side effects include:
- Blood clots
- Heart attack
- Pulmonary Embolism (PE)
- Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
- Venous thromboembolism (VTE)
- And more