What you need to know about power morcellators

In the recent years, power morcellators have cause alarm in the women’s health community due to its alleged side effect of potentially spreading cancerous cells and expediting growth. In a recent blog post, the Wall Street Journal listed five things that are important to know when considering these devices. Among the bullet points are the facts that

  1. There is no surefire way to detect whether a fibroid is cancerous before surgery
  2. Morcellators are not perfect — these tools do leave bits of tissue in the body
  3. While some doctors are beginning to implement the use of bags to help contain the fibroid tissue, many gynecologists do not feel this is necessary
  4. There are alternative surgeries available to women with fibroids that may also offer smaller incisions and minimally invasive operations

While some doctors feel that there are benefits to the use of this tool, others have made it clear that it could pose dangerous risks to some women. If you have suffered as a result of the use of a power morcellator in your gynecological surgery, call the attorneys at Williams Kherkher today at (888) 220-0640 to speak to a pharmaceutical product liability attorney and learn more about your legal options.

Orla gas plant explosion injures two

A major explosion occurred at an Anadarko Petroleum gas plant in Orla, Tex. on Thursday morning. Despite the size and severity of the explosion, only two people were injured, and Chief Deputy Israel Campos of the Reeves County Sheriff’s Office reported that their injuries were non-life threatening.

There were numerous workers at Ramsey Natural Gas Processing Plant when the explosion occurred, and officials are unsure exactly what caused the blast at this time. Investigators will continue to look into the cause of this explosion.

Officials evacuated those living within a 10-mile radius of the plant after the explosion occurred as the fire was contained and the area was secured.

Update 12/8: Authorities report that the fire at the Ramsey Natural Gas Processing Plant is still burning, but that it should be close to being put out.

Why the U.S. Pays More Than Other Countries for Drugs

Prescription drugs cost Norwegians substantially less than their American counterparts. This article in The Wall Street Journal looks at how the state-run healthcare systems of Norway and other countries use their bargaining power to drive down drug costs for citizens, and what prevents the U.S. Medicare system from doing the same for Americans.

Man sues morcellator manufacturer over wife’s death

The Legal Examiner reported on November 20 that a man from North Carolina, Jerry Woodell, filed a wrongful death and product liability case against a power morcellator manufacturer after his wife died following a hysterectomy.

Woodell’s wife had a laparoscopic hysterectomy with a power morcellator to remore uterine fibroids in March of 2012. The lawsuit, filed recently, cited that Woodell’s wife was in and out of the hospital after the surgery, often complaining of migraines and fatigue. She was then diagnosed with large masses in her pelvis that turned out to be a high-grade leiomyosarcoma. Woodell’s wife spent the next year and a half undergoing different surgeries and extensive chemotherapy, but the tumor only increased in size and spread over her body. She passed away last September 9.

In his lawsuit, Woodell claims that the morcellator manufacturer should have been aware of the possible dangers involved in the use of morcellators in surgeries.

Johnson & Johnson to pay $1.75M in Risperdal trial

NorthJersey.com recently reported that a jury ordered well-known pharmaceutical manufacturer Johnson & Johnson to pay approximately $1.75 million to 21-year-old Nicholas Murray from Maryland after he developed female breasts after taking the company’s anti-psychotic drug, Risperdal.

The report said that the jury concluded that Johnson & Johnson failed to advise patients and doctors that Risperdal could trigger abnormal breast development in males. The verdict granted damages for disfigurement and mental anguish to Murray.

The recent ruling is just one out of approximately 5,400 Risperdal cases against Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen unit. According to the report, in the same state court where Murray’s case was decided, there are about 1,500 other Risperdal lawsuits that have been filed by men who developed breasts after using the anti-psychotic drug.

If you or a loved one has suffered adverse and unadvertised side effects after taking Risperdal, help is available. Contact the experienced Risperdal lawsuit attorneys of Williams Kherkher by calling us today at (888) 220-0640.

John Eddie Williams honored with bronze bust at Baylor’s McLane Stadium

Earlier this week, attorney and Baylor University alumnus John Eddie Williams, Jr., was honored with a bronze bust placed at the south end zone of Baylor’s McLane Stadium. Williams attended Baylor on a football scholarship as an undergraduate, and has since generously donated to the school’s athletics program. Thanks to his donations, the field at McLane Stadium bears the name John Eddie Williams Field.

After finishing his undergraduate degree, Williams continued his education at Baylor Law School, to which he has also generously donated. At the bust unveiling, Williams stated “Other people’s generosities in the past allowed me to come here and so I always have thought that the right thing for me to do is to give back.”

Armi Easterby named partner at Williams Kherkher

At Williams Kherkher, we are pleased to announce that Armi Easterby has joined Steve Khereker, John Eddie Williams, Jim Hart, and John Boundas as a partner in our firm. Armi has been the head of our commercial litigation section for some time now, where he will continue to provide guidance and counsel on the environmental cases, intellectual property disputes, and the other commercial litigation matters that our firm handles. For as much as Armi has done for our firm, he has also been very active in the community where he has actively mentored young attorneys entering into the profession. With that being said, please join our team in congratulating Armi on his fine work and this well-deserved recognition.

Attorney John Eddie Williams honored for pro bono work

ADVAOur team is proud to announce that our very own John Eddie Williams was recently honored with the Joseph D. Jamail Award for Justice that is presented by Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse (AVDA), a Houston-based non-profit. This award honors “‘unparalleled community service and advocacy for those who cannot afford legal representation’” and reflects the extensive pro bono work that Williams has donated to this valuable organization. Founded in 1980, AVDA provides direct support and advocacy to families that have been victimized by domestic abuse.

Over the years, Williams and his wife, Sheridan, have distinguished themselves as philanthropists in Houston. The couple has helped to fund research in Houston hospitals, donated toys to underprivileged families, and have directly supported many other causes like AVDA.

Understanding the role of morcellators in leiomyosarcoma

Leiomyosarcoma is a type of cancer that forms from smooth muscle cells in the soft tissues, usually in the gastrointestinal tract or the uterus. When these cells develop in the muscular part of the uterus, it is referred to as uterine leiomyosarcoma. This type of cancer is most common in women who range in age from 40 to 60.

One thing that has been identified as a danger to women who are at risk of developing this cancer is the power morcellator. This tool uses a rotating blade to break up large portions of fibroid tissues into smaller fragments and then vacuum them away from the body. When morcellators are used on fibroids that contain cancer cells, the act of breaking them up can release those cells and allow them to scatter throughout the body. This often leads malignant cells to grow much more rapidly than they would have otherwise, expediting the growth of metastatic leiomyosarcoma in the body.

If you were diagnosed with uterine or metastatic leiomyosarcoma after a procedure involving a power morcellator, please do not hesitate to contact the attorneys at Williams Kherkher. We want to fight for you and your rights so that you can focus on your recovery. Call us now at (888) 220-0640 to learn more.

Symptoms of morcellation-induced cancer

Women who have undiagnosed uterine cancer may be at a higher risk of those cells spreading if they undergo medical procedures in which power morcellators are used. These instruments can cause additional harm by releasing concealed cancerous cells in early developmental stages during the process of breaking up fibroids or other growths. By releasing these cancerous cells, morcellators allow them to grow in new and dangerous areas of the body where they would not have otherwise spread so quickly. Morcellators may actually advance cancers from early stages to later stages.

Women are at a particularly high risk of developing uterine cancer as a result of morcellator procedures. A few symptoms to watch for after this type of procedure are:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Swelling of the abdomen or the pelvis
  • Pelvic or abdominal pain
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Vaginal bleeding or spotting, which may occur after menopause or between monthly periods
  • Weight loss

Other symptoms include back pain and nerve issues if the tumor affects organs or bones such as the spinal cord.

If you or a loved one suffers from cancer that was spread by power morcellators, consult with the legal team at Williams Kherkher to learn about your legal options. Call us today at (888) 220-0640.

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