Were you harmed by a defective IVC filter?
About Inferior Vena Cava Filters (IVC Filters)
Inferior vena cava filters are small, metal, spider-like devices that are designed to stop a blood clot from going to the heart or lung of a patient. Those who cannot use blood thinners, or have a high likelihood of forming blood clots, have these surgically implanted within their vein to “catch” blood clots.
A doctor inserts the device using a catheter into a patient’s inferior vena cava through a small incision in the neck or groin. The metal wires, like those below, trap blood clots before the reach the heart or lungs.
IVC filters first entered the market in 1979, and their use has increased significantly. Placement of IVC filters has steadily risen in the United States to an estimated 259,000 placed in patients as of last year. Some IVC filters, particularly those manufactured by C.R. BARD, do not do what they are made to do. Instead, these defective filters can migrate away from their position or break and puncture veins and major organs, leading to serious injury or death.
Risks and Complications with IVC Filters
In 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a safety alert for IVC retrievable filters after receiving 921 reports of adverse events.
These included the following:
- device migration
- filter perforation
- filter fracture
- detached device components
These devices are intended to be removed from one to three months after they are inserted, and many end up not being removed, putting patients at higher risk for injury or death. Studies confirm these warnings.
Which IVC Filters Fail Most
These five retrievable IVC filters are most prone to failure:
- Bard’s Recovery
- Bard’s G2
- Bard’s G2 Express
- Cook’s Gunther Tulip
- Cook’s Celect
Although Bard knew about the problems with their IVC filters, they failed to inform the public or the FDA. If you’ve been injured by an IVC filter, you have rights. Speak to an attorney at Van Wey Law immediately for an investigation of your specific case.