You trust the medical device that your doctor recommends. You expect that it will help you get better, manage your pain, prevent pregnancy, or make your surgery easier. What you couldn’t have expected is that it would cause you serious injury because of a:
- Design defect.
- Manufacturing defect.
- Manufacturer’s failure to warn you of dangers.
However, any one of these problems could result in a defective medical device that causes you significant, potentially life-threatening, harm. Don’t wait to find out what your legal rights may be if you’ve been hurt, because the statute of limitations could expire if you don’t take action quickly. Instead, learn about your rights in this free article and then call our pharmaceutical class action lawyers directly at 1-800-800-5678 to learn more.
11 Examples of Specific Medical Devices That Have Caused Injuries
In recent years, people have been hurt by defects in the following types of medical devices:
- Power morcellators. Power morcellators have been used to break up tissue while it is still in the body. This allows for a smaller incision and quicker recovery time. However, if undetected cancer cells are present in the tissue, then the cancer can spread throughout the abdominal cavity and create a potentially life-threatening problem.
- Gastrointestinal scopes. Gastrointestinal scopes that are used to diagnose and treat a variety of gastrointestinal conditions have been linked to dangerous infections. It is alleged that bacteria enters the scope and then is spread from patient to patient.
- Transvaginal mesh. Transvaginal mesh has been used to treat pelvic organ prolapse and urinary incontinence. However, the Food and Drug Administration recently classified these devices as high risk after many women suffered significant injuries.
- DePuy hip implants. Metal-on-metal DePuy hip implants, such as the ASR and Pinnacle hip implant lines, have been linked to dangerous conditions. It is alleged that the metal parts rub together and release metal into the blood stream and that premature failure can occur. Significant settlements and jury verdicts have been reached on behalf of some of the injured patients.
- Biomet hip implants. Metal on metal Biomet hip implants pose similar risks as the DePuy metal on metal hip implants. Some patients suffered metal poisoning or premature hip failure after having a Biomet M2a Magnum hip replacement. Biomet settled these claims in 2014.
- Overactive bladder treatments. Botox injections and Oxytrol patches have been used by doctors to treat overactive bladders. However, these treatments have led to dangerous urinary tract infections and other complications.
- Da Vinci surgical robots. These surgical robots are supposed to make a patient’s life easier. Smaller incisions, for example, should lead to a shortened recovery time. However, thousands of injuries and some deaths have been reported, and dozens of lawsuits have been filed against the robots’ maker.
- Bair Hugger surgical warming blankets. These devices are supposed to keep patients warm during surgery and reduce the risk of hypothermia. However, these devices have been linked to dangerous infections. It is alleged that the product’s design allows bacteria into the surgical site.
- NuvaRing birth control. NuvaRing was supposed to be a new safe and convenient form of birth control. Unfortunately, some women suffered dangerous blood clots after using NuvaRing.
- IVC filters. These medical devices are used to prevent blood clots. However, if they are left in the body too long, then they can break apart or migrate and cause a life-threatening complication.
- Mirena IUD. This form of birth control is implanted and can be left in the body for up to five years. While it may be convenient, it is has also been linked to potentially dangerous conditions and lawsuits have been filed against Bayer, the manufacture of the IUD.
Of course, this list is not all-inclusive and other medical devices may also cause injury.
Post-market Surveillance Is No Substitute for Pre-Market Research
Pre-market research may not catch all medical device defects. Observing the results after the device has been available for use with actual patients is important. However, in order to protect patients from medical device injuries, it is likely necessary to improve pre-market research and the medical device approval process in addition to strengthening post-market scrutiny.
Post-market surveillance is meant to make information about patient medical device injuries easier to access, analyze and share. However, the system works by reporting injuries. In other words someone—possibly many people—must already allege they have been hurt by a medical device before any action is taken. It’s clearly not ideal to wait for injuries to occur, if more careful pre-market scrutiny could have prevented the injuries altogether.
Report Your Medical Device Injury
As you pursue your physical recovery with a doctor, we encourage you to also make sure that your injury is reported to:
- The FDA.
- The medical device manufacturer.
- A pharmaceutical injury lawyer.
It is important to report your injury—even if you can be treated—because it might give another doctor or patient the information necessary to avoid a similar injury in the future. Additionally, it puts the FDA and medical device manufacturer on notice of potential problems and a lawyer can help protect your legal recovery. To learn more, please start a live chat with us and schedule a free consultation with an experienced pharmaceutical injury lawyer today.