Does anyone remember a recall of Ethicon Vicryl sutures in the mid 1990's?
I found some info on the FDA home page, but would like to know if any of you remember this and what was the recall regarding.
Feb 6, '08
I found this forum through Google. I, too, was a lucky recipient of the contaminated sutures and received a very small settlement considering the pain and changes the infection made in my life. I received the sutures during a tram flap reconstruction after breast cancer. I had problems healing initially, but the abscess and infections were about 18 months later. After a month on IV antibiotics the surgeon opened my abdominal wall to find two sutures that were infected. He removed the sutures and carefully cleaned the area. I went home with IV antibiotics once again. About a month later when the IV was removed the infection returned. I was again put on IV antibiotics for another three months off and on. Finally the Plastic surgeon and a general surgeon removed all the infected mess, including all my abdominal muscles. Hip to hip breast to pelvis, I have no muscles at all, just the outer skin over the entire abdomen with nothing holding in my organs and bowels. I have worn binders for eight years now. I wear as many as four at a time for support. My skin stretches more all the time. I cannot walk or stand for longer than a few minutes without having to sit. I was in the hospital again last week with pain and the CT scan showed some inflammatory tissue around my colon. IV antibiotics once again helped. But the pain continues. The surgeon told me I can never have surgery because nothing would hold the sutures in place. He told me all my organs are falling out of place and the pain is most likely due to that. He wants me to lose weight. I have gained nearly 100 lbs since the surgery removing the muscles because I can't burn off calories. I am now diabetic, also. I am so tired of looking and feeling like I am nine months pregnant at nearly 70 years of age. My reason for adding my story here is because I am so angry that Ethicon got away with this. No doctor or nurse has ever heard of these sutures when I tell them. If a good friend had not been watching 20/20 when this was discussed I would have had no idea what happened to me. The small settlement I got was based on the fact that my surgery was two years after the supposed recall yet today these sutures are showing up in Iraq in our soldiers. They were packaged not only under Ethicon labels but sent to other companies who sold under their own labels. Wendy York is a lawyer in CA who has been active in pursuing this injustice. Thanks for listening.
Last edit by ggmamk on Feb 8, '08
: Reason: typo