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If you have suffered a complication from an IVC filter you may want to consider hiring an attorney who can seek compensation for you, or in the case of a fatality, for your estate.
Why is this important?
First of all, medical care is expensive, emergency surgery, CT scans, surgery by specialists who either place or have to remove this delicate medical device – all cost money and lots of it.
If you have spent money on medical care that injured you, you should not have to pay for it. Additionally, if you now need follow-up medical care, or compensation for injuries you suffered as a result of the negligence of a device maker, again, you should not be the one who shoulders the burden.
There is an implied warranty when a company sells you a device and uses it on or inside your body, that that product is safe. The more we learn about many device makers, we are finding that your safety is not their primary concern. That is wrong. Hiring a product liability attorney can help make it right, though in many cases you will never regain your health.
Remember, there is no price on your health. No one is going to “benefit” from a lawsuit. There is no such thing as a “payday,” but what we can do is seek compensation to make your life better if you have suffered permanent life-altering injuries or if you have endured pain and suffering as a result of someone else’s negligence.
Here is what you can expect when you file a lawsuit.
There are five IVC products that are most often the focus of defective product litigation. C.R. Bard made the Recovery filter and the G2 and G2 Express, which are now off the market. Cook makes the Gunther Tulip filter and the Celect filter.
The complaint written on behalf of you, the plaintiff, states the manufacturer failed to warn you about the increased risk of these filters to break in the body sending metal shards to land wherever, including potentially an organ.
We have reported on the apparently fraudulent way it appears C.R. Bard brought the Recovery IVC filter to market. A regulatory specialist who was hired to submit data to the FDA to win approval, was told not to ask for the data, yet the application to the FDA contained her signature. She says she did not sign it.
Then there is the question of what Bard knew and did not reveal to the public or to doctors whose job it is to provide a patient with true informed consent.
As soon as one year after Bard released Recovery onto the market, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration began getting reports of filter perforation, migration, device tilting and detaching components that are free to move around the body. A study from Ohio State University Medical Center found 46 percent of the filters had penetrated the vena cava and adjacent organs. At least 27 deaths are associated with Bard’s Recovery filter but the company did not take it off the market until it created its successor, the G2.
The record there was not much better. When G2 went on the market in 2005, hundreds of reports of device migration, detachment, perforation and fractures came into the FDA and to Bard. But the company left the G2 on the market until 2010.
At no time were these devices recalled. They were quietly removed from the market even though Bard knew there were deaths and hundreds of problems.
The FDA even says Bard illegally sold adulterated and misbranded IVC filters and did not seek clearance from the agency and did not have an adequate system set up for reporting complications to the FDA. That means the company intentionally skirted the rules for its own benefit and to the detriment of patients who never received true informed consent because the company withheld the dangers it knew was occurring.
At this time multidistrict litigation or consolidating of cases in federal courts is now happening in Indiana and Arizona. Your law firm should be familiar with the MDL process and you will want to know what time frame you need to act within. An MDL is different from a class action in that each individual is assessed differently depending on the degree of injury he or she suffers. The pre-trial process is coordinated by law firms and there is generally one judge so rulings are consistent. This allows for cases to move more quickly through the system.
There will be some cases selected as bellwethers or test cases to judge legal theories. After losing a number of bellwether cases, a defendant will often see the writing on the wall and decide to offer a settlement rather than fight you in court.
You do not want the statutes of limitations to pass by without action. Every state has different rules as to the time frame within which you must file a lawsuit. If you are considering an action, be sure you consult with an attorney familiar with the statute of limitations.
These cases will likely take years to wind through the courts. Meanwhile, we conduct discovery or research collecting documents from the other side. That tells us what was going on inside the company and why they failed to act to protect you.
The more we look into these cases, even with no preconceptions other than your injury, the more we find that there is a degree of reckless disregard for the safety and well-being of others that is behind the drive for profits above all else, certainly over your loved one’s health and safety. The courthouse is the only place to hold them accountable.
The good news for you is that at no time will you be asked to pay anything to take your case through to the end. Instead, we work on a contingency system meaning we do not get paid until you win your case.
A complimentary consultation will let you know your options. We hope you will take the opportunity to understand the process by speaking with one of our IVC filter injury lawyers.