First Trial in Southern Nevada Hepatitis Case Set to Begin

LAS VEGAS- The first hepatitis C civil trial is underway two years after tens of thousands of people learned they might have been exposed to the disease at several  local endoscopy clinics.

The plaintiffs, Henry and Lorrain Chanin, are suing for millions -- between seven and nine figures.

Attorneys say Henry Chanin contracted hepatitis C during a colonoscopy several years ago. He has settled with the doctor, clinic and nurse in the case but is now going to trial with the pharmaceutical companies.

Teva Pharmaceuticals and Baxter Healthcare Corporation manufactured and supplied the vials of propofol used at the clinics.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs say the companies knowingly made and sold vials that were too big, encouraging bad practices.

"The real issue is why were they selling 50 milliliter vials of propofol to endoscopy centers who wouldn't need more than 10 or 20 milliliters at the most," said attorney Robert Eglet.

Attorneys for the pharmaceutical companies did not want to comment on the case. Jury selection is expected to take one week. The actual trial is expected to last about a month.


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