For a company revered for almost a century for its credo on ethical behavior, the branding by an urogynecology expert as unethical the business decision of Johnson & Johnson officials is like a slap on their faces. This was how Dr. Anne Weber described the actions of the company executives in insisting to market the Gynecare Prolift vaginal mesh despite strong indications that this device may cause injuries to a lot of women already suffering from pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI).
Internal communications presented in the trial revealed that researchers had warned of possible problems with the present materials used for the Gynecare Prolift. In addition, prototype testing of the vaginal mesh yielded a failure rate which was way beyond acceptable levels.
She also raised the issue of the company’s interference in the matter of the medical publication involving the Prolift. She contends that the conduct of the executives in funding the article which supposedly endorsed the product was scientifically unacceptable. To further prove her point, she highlighted the company’s move to delete the phrase “further studies needed to confirm the safety of the Prolift” from the article.