On February 5, Tonya Brand won $3 million in her case against Cook Medical Inc. involving the defective and dangerous inferior vena cava (IVC) filter that deteriorated inside her body. This is the first time that a jury has found in favor of the plaintiff determining that IVC filters are problematic and that the manufacturers should be held responsible for the damages that they cause patients.
What is an IVC Filter?
An IVC filter is made up of several prongs and looks similar to the frame of a closed umbrella. This device is inserted into the inferior vena cava, a vein located in the upper chest that leads to the heart, with the purpose of catching possible blood clots to prevent them from traveling to the heart or lungs. If a blood clot travels to the heart or lungs, it could cause a pulmonary embolism which may damage these crucial organs. However, these wire prongs can erode, break apart, and migrate to other parts of the body. In this specific case involving Ms. Brand, she pulled part of her Celect Vena Cava Filter out of her thigh in 2011 after it had broken apart and deteriorated. Other pieces of the device are still lodged in her body and aren’t able to be safely removed.
Brand won her case based on two main factors: 1) Cook Medical claims that their device is removable. However, if it erodes and lodges into other parts of the body, doctors may not be able to safely take out the broken pieces and 2) the poor design of this medical device can cause it to break apart causing health complications.
What Should You Know About IVC Filters?
Many patients who had IVC filter surgery were never told of the risks associated with this device. Another issue is that while many of these IVC filters were supposed to be removable, countless patients weren’t given a follow-up surgery. You may be eligible for financial compensation if:
- you had an IVC filter implanted between 2005-2017
- your IVC filter fractured or broke
- your IVC filter migrated or shifted
- you were injured by your IVC filter and it punctured organs or blood vessels
Cook Medical, Bard, and Greenfield, the makers of these common medical devices, put your life at risk and failed to warn of the dangers that come with their products. If you or a loved one were injured due to an IVC filter, call Periscope Group today at (800) 511-3838. We may be able to help.