The placement of IVC filters (“Inferior Vena Cava” Filter) has been commonly indicated for use in patients who are at risk of blood clot movement due to deep venous thrombosis (DVT) or a pulmonary embolism (PE). For some patients, the use of anticoagulation is not advised, and implanting an IVC filter was believed to be the safest and most effective way to protect the patient against blood clots. Unfortunately, many patients have suffered severe adverse effects after an IVC filter has been implanted.
Adverse Events: IVC Filters Under Scrutiny by the FDA
The adverse effects reported by the FDA in a Safety Communication in May of 2014 include:
- Device migration
- Filter fracture
- Embolization (device or broken shards moving into heart or lungs)
- Lower limb deep vein thrombosis
- IVC occlusion
- Internal bleeding
- Cardiac or pericardial tamponade (heart compression by fluid accumulation)
The agency recommends the removal of IVC filters as soon as the risks associated with pulmonary embolism have gone. Since 2005, there have been approximately 1,000 reports of adverse events associated with IVC filters, and many injured patients are seeking legal representation to assist in filing a claim for damages.
The “inferior vena cava” is a main blood vessel returning blood from the lower body to the heart. IVC filters are implanted in patients who have a history of blood clots, were victims of trauma, surgery patients, or patients who are at risk of developing deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
The Dangers of IVC Filters
IVC filters are manufactured from wire, and have a spider-like appearance. Problems associated with these devices often involve the wire arms becoming detached from the device, and then being transported by blood to the heart or lungs. The length of time the device is left in the body increases the chances of this dangerous splintering.
Many patients have had a temporary IVC filter implanted and left in the body for many months or even years, leading to dangerous or fatal results. A research study issued by NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information) revealed that about 70% of retrievable IVC filters are never removed, with many patients simply lost in the shuffle. The ability to successfully remove the filter decreases as time passes, and the filter may adhere to the inside of the vein, posing danger to the patient.
Types of IVC Filters: Lawsuits and Claims
Various manufacturers of IVC filters may now be facing lawsuits from injured patients, including the following potential defendants:
- C.R. Bard
- Cook Medical
- Boston Scientific
- Argon Medical
- B. Braun
Meyers & Flowers: IVC Filter Lawsuits
The use of IVC filters is increasing, and it is expected that incidences of adverse events will continue to increase as well. Whether the injuries sustained were related to a failure to remove an IVC filter, or due to the device itself or pieces of the device migrating to the heart, lungs, or other organ, the medical intervention necessary to attempt to resolve the issue can lead to further health risks, pain, and suffering. Call today for more information about IVC filter lawsuits.
At Meyers & Flowers, our trial attorneys are seasoned litigators and are known for their skill in case development in medical device injury cases -- and their many successful claims and lawsuits. If you or a loved one has suffered serious medical problems associated with an IVC filter, we would like to hear from you at once. You can be confident in our ability to manage your case with the highest level of professional skill. Contact us directly, or use our free online case evaluation form. Our Chicago IVC filter attorneys are here to help you seek justice and full compensation for the financial and personal damages you have suffered.