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Are You At-Risk?

Your Inferior Vena Cava (IVC) is the largest vein in your body. It carries your “used” blood to the right side of your heart where it is then pumped into your lungs to be re-oxygenated. After this, it travels to the left side of your heart where it is pumped again to provide oxygen and nutrients to your body tissues.

IVC filters are inserted when certain medical conditions could potentially cause blood clots to form. These clots can travel to the heart and lungs, causing serious injury or death. So, IVC filters are implanted in the inferior vena cava to catch blood clots and prevent this from happening.

Which Filters are Defective?

IVC filters

There is a very serious problem associated with some of these filters (mostly manufactured by C R BARD, Inc. and Cook Medical) … so serious that patients are suffering serious injury and even death with these defective devices. Specifically, if you have one of the following devices implanted, you could be in danger:

  • BARD Recovery, G2, G2 X, G2 Express, Eclipse, Meridian
  • Cook Gunther Tulip, Celect

IVC Filter Complications

  • IVC Filter Fracture
  • Perforation, Puncture or Serious Damage to the Heart, Lungs or Vena Cava
  • Internal Bleeding
  • Cardiac or Pericardial Tamponade
  • Ventricle Tachycardia
  • Lower Limb DVT
  • Hematoma or Nerve Injury at the Puncture Site
  • Constant and Severe Pain in the Heart, Chest or Elsewhere in the Body
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Infection
  • Death

Background

The inferior vena cava (IVC) filter is a small medical device that is implanted deep inside the body to capture blood clots before they enter the lungs and cause a pulmonary embolism. However, the filters have been known to cause more harm than good, causing serious injury and even death in some cases.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a safety alert in 2010 warning about the dangers of IVC filters. They had received more than 1,000 adverse event reports since 2005. The reports included:

  • 328 reports involving migration of the device
  • 146 embolizations (detachment of device components)
  • 70 perforations of the IVC
  • 56 filter fractures

These events are believed to occur when an IVC filter is not removed and is left in the body for too long. The device is only meant to remain in the body for a short-term, but is not always removed as it should be once a patient’s risk of Pulmonary Embolism has subsided.

Manufacturers of the IVC filters, namely Bard and Cook Medical, are facing hundreds of lawsuits filed by patients who have suffered serious injury as a result of the devices. These two companies have been accused of manufacturing and marketing defective devices without adequately warning the medical community and the public about the risks and potential dangers of the IVC filters.

In October of 2014, IVC filter lawsuits against Cook Medical were centralized in a multi-district litigation (MDL) in a federal court in Indiana. The Judicial Panel on Multi-district Litigation issued an order that centralized 27 of the IVC Filter lawsuits pending in 11 district courts into the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.

In 2012, the first Bard IVC filter lawsuits were filed in California and Pennsylvania and additional lawsuits in federal courts followed. The first Bard IVC filter lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount after 10 days of litigation.

Contact Van Wey Law with Questions

Be sure to contact our office with any questions or concerns you might have with your IVC filter today. Whether you have one implanted currently, or if you are considering removal because you may have a defective IVC filter, we would like to help you, and also hold the manufacturers responsible for their negligence.