Medical Devices & Pharmaceuticals
"The product liability practice [at WTO] should be in the discussion
as to whether they are the best in the country."
Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell attorneys have broad experience in pattern, product liability, and class action litigation for a number of companies that develop, manufacture, and market medical devices and pharmaceuticals.
This experience, together with our attorneys' varied backgrounds in science and technical fields, including chemistry, physics, and engineering, makes for a winning combination in the defense of lawsuits arising from the use of medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetic implants.
Articles and Presentations
- In re MDL 2700 Genetech Herceptin (Trastuzumab) Marketing and Sales Practices Litig. (10th Cir. 2019) - Authored amicus brief for the Product Liability Advisory Council urging affirmance of holding that state law consumer fraud claims against drug manufacturer were preempted under the Supreme Court's impossibility preemption principles.
- In re Gadolinium-Based Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2868 (J.P.M.L. 2018) - As lead national trial counsel to GE Healthcare, successfully argued before the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to defeat plaintiffs' attempt create an MDL involving gadolinium-based contrast agents.
- In re: Zoloft Litigation (Cir. Ct. Kanawha Cnty. W. Va. 2016) - Won exclusion of a key plaintiff causation witness and summary judgment in a West Virginia case alleging that Pfizer's medication, Zoloft, causes birth defects. As a result, the court granted summary judgment in Pfizer's favor less than three weeks before trial.
- In re: Zoloft (Sertraline Hydrochloride) Products Liability Litigation (E.D. Pa. 2016) - Successfully excluded all of plaintiffs' general causation experts to help Pfizer secure summary judgment in federal Zoloft birth defect MDL.
- Won exclusion of plaintiffs' general causation experts in multidistrict litigation involving more than 600 claimants alleging the antidepressant Zoloft caused birth defects.
- Served as national counsel to a global healthcare company in multidistrict litigation involving over 12,000 claims relating to dialysis products. WTO helped develop national resolution strategy, identified bellwether cases, and negotiated settlement of all claims.
- Developed a novel argument for summary judgment in defense of GE Healthcare in its Omniscan litigation. The trial court granted summary judgment, and in 2015 the Sixth Circuit affirmed.
- Serving as national coordinating and trial counsel to a cochlear implant manufacturer for the defense of product liability lawsuits involving a Class III medical device used to treat hearing loss.
- Represented a Fortune 500 company as national trial counsel for hundreds of product liability claims and lawsuits involving a Class III medical device used to treat abdominal aortic aneurysms.
- Anderson v. Pfizer (N. Dak. 2010) - Successfully defended a pharmaceutical company against claims that a convicted murderer's actions were induced by prescription medication. The plaintiff dismissed the case after 18 months of intense litigation.
- Won a jury defense verdict for an orthopedic spine surgeon in a medical malpractice case with millions of dollars in damage claims at stake, including eight years of accruing pretrial interest.
- Wilson v. Wyeth (E.D. Ark. 2008) - Obtained a favorable settlement for a pharmaceutical company against claims that the plaintiff developed Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS) from use of medication.
- McNellis v. Pfizer (3d Cir. 2008) - Won an appeal for Pfizer in a groundbreaking preemption case before the Third Circuit.
- Dusek v. Pfizer - Obtained summary judgment for Pfizer on preemption grounds in a case alleging that a popular antidepressant caused suicide.
- Taylor v. Solvay Pharmaceuticals - Obtained voluntary dismissal of claims against Solvay Pharmaceuticals in litigation stemming from the 1999 Columbine High School shooting.
- Miller v. Pfizer - Won exclusion of a star expert for the plaintiffs in antidepressant suicide litigation and won summary judgment for Pfizer in federal court in Kansas in a case alleging that the company's antidepressant led to the suicide of a minor.
- Smith v. Pfizer - Won exclusion of a plaintiff's causation experts and summary judgment for Pfizer in federal court in Kansas in a case alleging that the company's antidepressant led to the suicide of an adult male patient.