Bard IVC Filter Litigation
Intra Vena Cava (“IVC”) filters are small spider-like devices that are implanted in the veins of patients in the hope that the filters will stop blood clots from reaching the patient’s lungs and other vital organs. IVC filters are designed to capture blood clots that occasionally break free from the deep veins inside a patient’s body before the blood clots can reach the patient’s lungs and cause a decrease or a complete stoppage of blood flow to the patient’s lungs. However, hundreds of reports from across the nation indicate that the devices may fracture or break after implantation resulting in serious injuries and in some cases death.
IVC filters are usually implanted in patients who are at risk for having a sudden blockage of a major blood vessel, known as a pulmonary embolism, and are either unable to take anticoagulants or the patient has taken anticoagulants but they have failed to properly prevent the patient’s blood from clotting. The IVC filters are supposed to be a safe alternative which prevents blood clots from forming in a patient’s blood vessels. However, in April of 2015, the Journal of the American Medical Association published a study comparing the treatment of patients presenting with an acute pulmonary embolism and a high risk of recurrence using a retrievable IVC filter plus anticoagulants versus using anticoagulants alone. The study revealed that “the use of a retrievable inferior vena cava filters plus anticoagulation compared with anticoagulation alone did not reduce the risk of symptomatic recurrent pulmonary embolism at 3 months.” Furthermore, the study suggested that patients with IVC filters may be twice as likely to suffer from a serious, and sometimes fatal, pulmonary embolism than patients who were prescribed anticoagulants alone. Therefore, the study suggests that IVC filters should not be used in cases where patients can be treated with anticoagulation.Are you at risk?
At the center of the litigation is C.R. Bard Inc., (“Bard”) a manufacturer and marketer of medical technologies in the fields of vascular, urology, oncology, and surgical specialties. Bard marketed the Bard Recovery IVC Filter in 2003, but a couple of years later, in 2005, Bard removed the Bard Recovery IVC Filter from the market and replaced it with the new and improved Bard G2 IVC filter stating that the new filter included “enhanced fracture resistance.” However, since 2005, the Federal Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) has received hundreds of reports that both the Bard Recovery and the Bard G2 IVC filters have fractured and failed after they have been implanted in the patient. In some cases, the “legs” of the filters have broken or fractured, allowing the legs of the device to travel through the bloodstream and into other organs of the body. Other cases have found that the entire device has become dislodged and migrated intact through different parts of the patient’s body. These device failures have caused significant bodily injuries and complications to patients all across the country.
In 2010, the FDA issued a warning letter to doctors, notifying them of the potential dangers associated with retrievable IVC filters and that such devices should be removed as soon as the patient is no longer at risk for a pulmonary embolism. In 2014, the FDA issued another warning stating that patients are at increased risk the longer the IVC filters remain implanted. Then, in July 2015, the FDA issued a warning letter to C.R. Bard Inc. for misbranding a device that was used to remove the Recovery IVC Filter as well as quality system violations at Bard’s Arizona and New York facilities.GET HELP FROM TRUSTED ATTORNEYS
If you or a loved one were injured from an implanted IVC filter, then you should contact the Birmingham, Alabama Bard IVC filter attorneys of Hollis Wright Law Firm to discuss your legal options. You may very well have a viable personal injury claim against Bard, the manufacturer. Being represented by an experienced medical device lawyer is essential to getting a fair outcome from the company. At Hollis Wright, our attorneys will advocate for you, gather evidence to build your case, thoroughly prepare your case, represent you in court, negotiate aggressively on your behalf and otherwise fight for your right to compensation. Please call now for a free consultation. The attorneys handling this litigation for the firm are Tyler Vail and Bo Bell.