Shanin Specter and his team made it 2-0 against Johnson & Johnson in a case against vaginal mesh, a defective product that has caused permanent injury to women across the country. The latest verdict came on Wednesday as a jury in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court handed down a $13.5 million award – including $10 million in punitive damages — to a Toms River, NJ woman who had the plastic-like device surgically implanted in 2005 to relieve urinary incontinence. Instead, Sharon Carlino, now 58, suffered severe pain during sexual intercourse after the mesh eroded in her body. Two subsequent surgeries did not help. During the nearly three-week trial, Specter charged that J&J subsidiary Ethicon knew of the hazards the vaginal mesh product presented yet failed to alert patients or doctors. The company, he told the jury, put profit motive over the safety of patients.

In December, Specter won a similar case against J&J with a $12.5 million for an Indiana woman who also had a similar J&J mesh product implanted only to suffer permanent inability to have sexual intercourse without excruciating pain. Cited in the latest case was a published study that noted a high incidence – 15.6 percent -- of mesh erosion in women. The two cases are the first of scores slated to be tried in Philadelphia.

Counsel for the plaintiffs in the Carlino case were Specter, Kila Baldwin, Michael Trunk and Michelle Tiger, of Kline & Specter, PC, and Richard A. Freese and Calle Mendenhall, of Freese & Goss, of Birmingham, AL.

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