Kelley/Uustal is now accepting cases nationwide involving defective IVC blood clot filter devices. If you have been injured after receiving an IVC filter, or have suffered the untimely loss of a loved one due to a complication with the device, you may be entitled to compensation. We encourage you to contact a Fort Lauderdale product liability lawyer at our firm to discuss a potential lawsuit against the manufacturer of the defective device.
What is an IVC Filter?
IVC filtration devices are small, spider-like metal devices that are inserted into the inferior vena cava, the main blood vessel that returns blood from the lower half of the body back up to the heart. The purpose of the device is to catch blood clots before they can reach the lungs, which can lead to serious and potentially life threatening complications. Manufacturers C.R. Bard, Inc., Cook Medical, and Cordis Corporation are the market leaders in the sale of IVC filters.
IVC filter usage has increased rapidly over the past three decades, with tens of thousands of patients receiving the device every year in the U.S. However, studies have shown that prolonged use of IVC filters is linked with serious or fatal complications including:
- Device migration
- Device fracture
- Organ perforation
- An increased risk for blood clots (the condition the device is supposed to address)
These devices are intended to provide temporary protection against blood clots in the lungs, but are often left permanently in the patient because of the invasiveness and risks involved with removal surgery. A 2015 report found that long-term placement of IVC filters inside a patient was associated with a failure rate as high as 43 percent.
FDA Issues IVC Filter Warning
In 2010, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) stated that it had received more than 920 reports of adverse effects linked with IVC filters since 2005. Of the reported events, 328 involved migration of the device, 146 involved component detachment, 70 involved perforation injuries, and 56 involved filter failure in which sharp metal pieces fractured from the device and travelled up to the heart or pulmonary artery.
Since physicians and IVC manufacturers are not required to report complications to the FDA, the actual number of adverse effects may be higher. The FDA later released a safety communication in 2014 advising doctors to remove the device as soon as protection from pulmonary embolism is no longer needed, which should ideally be between 29 and 54 days after implantation.
Lawsuits Against Dangerous IVC Device Manufacturers
Medical device manufacturers have a duty to provide products that are both effective and safe. This means that they are required to test their products for any known defects before marketing and selling them. Furthermore, device manufacturers must inform doctors and patients of any and all risks associated with the product. Failure to take these steps leaves manufacturers liable in product liability and wrongful death lawsuits.
In general, plaintiffs are able to recover the following damages in dangerous medical device lawsuits:
- Past and future medical care
- Past and future lost earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Physical impairment
- Emotional anguish
In the case of a patient’s death, the surviving family members may be able to seek recompense for loss of support, loss of companionship, and more.
Contact Our Experienced Florida Product Defect Lawyer
If an IVC filter has left you with a serious injury, the team of dedicated personal injury attorneys at Kelley/Uustal stand ready to help you pursue the financial compensation you deserve from the negligent device manufacturer. We have handled numerous product liability cases during our many years in practice. Our team has more than 325 years of collective experience and is led by Robert W. Kelley, who has been named one of the top ten attorneys in the nation by Lawyers USA. You can be confident entrusting your case to our care.bYou have nothing to lose in talking to Kelley/Uustal about your case, and potentially much to gain. For more information on IVC filter lawsuits and to schedule a free case consultation today, call us at (954) 522-6601.