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    3M Subsidiary Claims Many Military Plaintiffs in Earplug Case Did Not Suffer Hearing Loss

    3M Subsidiary Claims Many Military Plaintiffs in Earplug Case Did Not Suffer Hearing Loss

    A 3M subsidiary claims that U.S. Defense Department records show that over 175,00 members who allege the Maplewood-based company's earplugs were defective have normal hearing under key medical standards.

    The filing this week in U.S. Bankruptcy Court is the latest turn in the legal war between 3M and over 200,000 veterans and current service members over 3M's Combat Arms CAEv2, which were once standard military issue.

    Plaintiffs claim the earplugs were defective, causing them hearing loss and tinnitus. 3M claims the earplugs were safe.

    3M put its Aearo Technologies subsidiary, where the earplug product originated, into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as one effort to resolve Combat Arms claims.

    Aearo, in a filing this week, said an analysis of Defense Department audiometric data shows the “vast majority” of earplug plaintiffs did not suffer hearing loss under the standards of the American Medical Association (AMA) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

    Aearo claims that under AMA criteria, almost 90% of plaintiffs have no hearing impairment; under WHO standards, more than 85% of plaintiffs have normal hearing. Nearly one-quarter of plaintiffs whose hearing is impaired under AMA or WHO standards had those conditions before using 3M earplugs, the company added.

    “These data reinforce the need for parties to work together to reach a reasonable resolution, based in data and scientific evidence, that does right by…

    Continue Reading This Article At Military.com

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