Inferior vena cava filters, or IVCs, seemed like a very smart invention at first: tiny devices implanted by doctors to capture blood clots that have broken away from an arterial wall before they enter the lungs, IVCs helped patients who were unable to take anticoagulants (blood thinners). The IVCs actually caught clots in the blood stream and, over time, the clots dissipated. Obviously, by preventing blood clots from migrating to the lungs, the IVCs were putting the brakes on a potentially disastrous situation.
It’s easy to see the appeal of these devices: with the baby boomer generation continuing to grow older, medical complications such as blood clots are increasingly common. Preventing this potentially fatal problem through a tiny device seems like a godsend.
Unfortunately, however, the devices have proved to be too good to be true. Patients who had the device implanted began reporting complications with them, and eventually the Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, took notice. Specifically, the complications reported included punctured organs and blood vessels, and filter migration to different parts of the body.
In 2010, the FDA issued its initial warning: IVCs posed risks of filter fracture, device migration and organ perforation. Remove them as soon as the patient’s risk for blood clots has decreased, they said. In 2014, the FDA issued yet another warning: remove IVCs between the 29th and 54th day after implantation. Despite the FDA’s best efforts, however, the warning either came too late or was not heeded. Many lawsuits ensued, claiming that IVC users experienced injury during the use of the product, or worse—death.
Although other companies manufacture IVC filters, three of the five most-litigated IVC products involve the manufacturer C.R. Bard. Its Bard Recovery filter, Bard G2 filter, and Bard G2 Express filters are alleged to have caused great injuries as noted above, and sometimes even death. Indeed, lawsuits lodge claims of negligence, design defects, manufacturing defects, negligent misrepresentation, breach of implied warranty, and other claims.
A filed class action lawsuit has alleged that Bard Recovery, G2 and G2 Express filters that “had not fractured or migrated must receive medical monitoring because of Bard’s negligence, misrepresentation and concealment of data…everyone who had one of the devices implanted in them make up a class which should be compensated for medical monitoring expenses.”
Other lawsuits have alleged ongoing heart issues and/or lung issues due to the device fracturing and migrating to one’s heart. Some have to take blood thinners for the remainder of their lives due to the ill effects of the device. Other lawsuits have claimed physical trauma, loss of consortium (companionship) of spouses, anxiety, or the inability to earn a living.
If you have suffered an injury due to the use of Bard IVCs—or worse yet, your loved one has perished due to the use of Bard IVCs—don’t delay. The attorneys at Brooks Law Group are here to analyze your case and help determine whether you are entitled to any compensation.