If you or a family member received an inferior vena cava (IVC) filter to prevent pulmonary embolisms and suffered adverse health complications, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Defective IVC filters may migrate, break apart, and perforate veins and organs. The NYC personal injury lawyers at Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo, PC can help clients bring IVC filter injury lawsuits against the manufacturer of the medical device. Call (212) 732-9000 today for a free consultation about your case.
An IVC filter injury could cause serious and fatal personal injuries. Patients have had to undergo emergency open-heart surgeries and other operations to try to retrieve lost IVC filters and repair organ damage. If you suffered a major injury because of a defective IVC filter, call an attorney for assistance. A lawyer can help you with complex paperwork during the claims process. He or she can optimize your chances of securing fair compensation for your past and future damages.
Inferior vena cava filters are tiny devices that serve as nets to catch and hold blood clots before they travel to the heart or lungs. Blood clots in the limbs or pelvis (deep vein thrombosis) can be fatal if they travel to the lungs and impede blood flow through a condition called pulmonary embolism. An IVC filter is an implantable device meant to prevent pulmonary embolism by blocking blood clots and holding them until a surgeon can retrieve the device.
An IVC filter injury can occur when a defective device breaks apart, migrates somewhere else in the body, or otherwise fails to perform as the manufacturer intended. IVC filter problems have included vein perforation, organ puncture, heart failure, vein blockage, and wrongful death. Although the Food and Drug Administration believes the benefits of IVC filters outweigh the risks during short-term use, the devices become more likely to malfunction if in the body for longer than four to six weeks.
The FDA has not announced any recalls for IVC Filter products. In addition, the two major manufacturers of the product who are facing litigation, C.R. Bard and Cook Medical, have failed to voluntarily recall their defective medical devices.
However, multiple warnings have been issued by the FDA regarding Bard products specifically. They state that patients should have retrievable IVC filters removed by their physicians as soon as they are no longer medically necessary. Additionally, they recommend that doctors only use an IVC filter when medication cannot solve the problem.
Hundreds of victims suffering from IVC Filter complications have filed lawsuits against the manufacturers. Many of the cases have formed into multidistrict litigations (MDLs). An MDL occurs when a decision is made by the courts to combine several cases together when there are multiple lawsuits with similar claims against one defendant. This is done to streamline the litigation process by having one court make all of the discovery and pretrial proceedings. The first few cases from an MDL to go to trial are called “bellwether trials.” Once the pretrial phase is complete, each case is then sent back to their corresponding courts. MDLs largely differ from class action lawsuits in this respect. In class actions, multiple cases are tried all together from start to finish.
As of August 2019, over 14,000 cases are pending litigation in the current MDLs involving IVC Filters:
Although a class action suit for IVC filters (Case No. 2:16-cv-01374) was filed in 2016, it has since been consolidated with the ongoing MDL in Arizona. This can sometimes happen when each plaintiff is unique in their injuries and side effects suffered. Therefore, it makes more sense for each case to be tried individually after the pretrial phase.
An Indiana jury awarded $3 million dollars in February 2019 to the third plaintiff to go to trial out of the cases pending in the Cook IVC MDL. The jury found that a Cook Celect IVC filter was defective, however they declined to award punitive damages. Cook Medical was successful in their first two bellwether cases.
In the first bellwether trial of the Arizona MDL against Bard Medical, a jury ordered the manufacturer to pay $3.6 million to a plaintiff in 2018 and a federal judge upheld the verdict. A few months later, the second bellwether trial ended in favor of the defense. The third bellwether case did not make it to trial, but was settled outside of court in May 2019, however details regarding the IVC filter settlement agreement have not been disclosed.
The following manufacturers along with their listed devices have been named in lawsuits:
|Manufacturer||Models Named in Lawsuits|
|Bard||Recovery, G2, G2 Express (G2X), Eclipse, Denali, Meridian|
|Cook Medical||Celect, Gunther Tulip|
At Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo, PC, we care about patients in New York. Our lawyers work around the clock to investigate IVC filter and other defective medical device claims. We may be able to help you gather evidence, get documentation of your injuries, and bring a claim against Bard, the manufacturer of most defective filters. You could be eligible for significant compensation for an IVC filter injury or a loved one’s death. Start your claim with a free consultation at our NYC office. Schedule yours online or speak to an attorney today at (212) 732-9000.