There are numerous birth control options available on the market today. Various items such as patches, pills, condoms, inner uterine devices, or birth control rings; just to name a few. But they all have one goal in mind- to prevent pregnancy. It is a very profitable industry, that is for the most part successful. Yet, some prevention methods come with a laundry list of side effects. Therefore there are lawsuits popping up all over the country claiming that women were harmed by their birth control method.
For example, one recent lawsuit has a woman claiming that her birth control ring caused her harm.
The woman, Dawn Kregel, of Denton, Texas, filed a lawsuit on Jan. 9 against the manufacturers of NuvaRing, claiming she suffered a deep vein thrombosis shortly after using the birth control device. The lawsuit includes makers Organon USA Inc., Organon Pharmaceuticals USA Inc., Organon International Inc., Schering-Plough Corp. and Merck & Co. Inc.
According to Kregel, she used the monthly birth control device for a little over one month in 2010 and was subsequently diagnosed with a DVT, which she alleges was the result of the NuvaRing device, said The Southeast Texas Record.
NuvaRing is a transparent, flexible vaginal ring that provides month-long birth control by emitting a continuous dose of estrogen and progestin for 21 days. The device releases a combination of ethinyl estradiol, a form of the hormone estrogen, and etonogestral. NuvaRing is marketed as providing the same efficacy as birth control pills but with the convenience of month-long protection.
Kregel argues that the defendants failed to warn that that the ring product was associated with more thrombotic events than the pill. The defendants are accused of marketing, promoting and advertising that the ring product had a relatively low amount of estrogen in an effort to hide that it had a high level of dangerous third-generation progestin.
Kregel states that if she had known of the increased risks associated with the ring product that she would have used another method for birth control.
Causes of action filed against the defendant include strict product liability, breach of warranty, negligence, fraud and misrepresentation and consumer fraud.
The plaintiff is seeking more than $10 million in damages for pain, medical expenses, loss of time from her employment, loss of quality of life, exemplary damages, attorney’s fees, interest and court courts.
Other NuvaRing lawsuits claim the birth control device caused the sudden deaths of users. For instance, in June 2010, a lawsuit was initiated by the estate of a woman who died using the contraceptive, claiming her use of NuvaRing led to a fatal blood clot. That lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Omaha on behalf of Ann Tompkins, a mother of two who died after using NuvaRing for five months. That lawsuit sought damages from several pharmaceutical firms that sold or manufactured the contraceptive at one time.
A family friend found Ann dead in her home; the autopsy revealed her cause of death was a blood clot in one of her lungs. The lawsuit accuses NuvaRing’s makers of over-promoting NuvaRing but not appropriately warning about the blood clot risk, among other issues.
Typically, NuvaRing lawsuits allege that because the device delivers a constant stream of hormone unmediated by the digestive system or the liver, patients end up receiving higher doses than they do from older pills. Of note, high estrogen doses create a greater risk of blood clots, which can be fatal.
Hundreds of similar NuvaRing lawsuits are currently pending in a multidistrict litigation in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri.