Wednesday, April 28, 2010



In re Ambulatory Pain Pump-Chondrolysis Products Liability Litigation, J.P.M.L., MDL No. 2139 (4/14/10).

Injured consumers claim that they developed chondrolysis after a pump used to directly send anesthetic into their shoulder joints following surgery failed.

From the Order:

Although these personal injury actions have some commonality as to whether
shoulder pain pumps and/or the anesthetic drugs used in those pumps cause
glenohumeral chondrolysis, an indeterminate number of different pain pumps made
by different manufacturers are at issue, as are different anesthetic drugs made by
different pharmaceutical companies.

Moreover, not all of the thirteen constituent actions involve pharmaceutical company defendants, and many defendants are sued only in a minority of those actions. The proponents of centralization have not convinced us that the efficiencies that might be gained by centralization would not
be overwhelmed by the multiple individualized issues (including ones of liability and causation) that these actions appear to present. The parties can avail themselves of alternatives to Section 1407 transfer to minimize whatever possibilities there might be of duplicative discovery and/or inconsistent pretrial rulings.

The Court went on to say:

the constituent actions are at widely varying procedural stages. In many, fact
discovery is either over or nearly over. The record shows that expert discovery is underway or has been completed in a number of actions.4 Although movants and other plaintiffs favoring centralization argue that defendants have stymied their efforts to streamline discovery, that argument is undercut by the multiple requests to exclude certain actions on the ground that they are too advanced to warrant inclusion in an MDL. Given all these circumstances, we are still unconvinced
that centralization would serve the convenience of the parties or promote the just and efficient conduct of the litigation, taken as a whole.

Find it here.

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