The first IVC filters were created to save lives. Unfortunately, in nearly 20 years of use, IVC filters have now become linked to a variety of serious complications, many of them potentially deadly. Many of these complications relate to the device breaking apart inside the body or not working as designed. If you or anyone you love has had an IVC filter, you should be aware that you could have grounds for a lawsuit. A number of patients have already successfully sued the makers of some of these devices, in some cases for settlements of millions of dollars. You need to talk to an IVC filter lawsuit lawyer.
At John Foy & Associates, we are now reaching out to patients who may have suffered because of an IVC to explore potential cases. With more than 20 years of experience, John Foy & Associates offers some of the most respected medical injury lawyers in the country. We have a mission of helping those who were harmed, and a long track record of winning. Let us give you a free consultation to show you what we can do for you. You pay nothing, ever, if we don’t get you money. Call us at 404-400-4000 and get your free consultation today.
What are IVC filters and how did they first come into use?
IVC filters are a relatively new medical device. They’re used when someone has a high chance of developing life-threatening blood clots, and cannot take medication for it such as blood thinners. They’re especially common after surgeries and among those suffering from diabetes or circulation issues. That’s because these individuals have a risk of developing a blood clot in the veins of the lower extremities. If that clot makes its way up the body to the lungs and heart, it can cause a serious life-threatening condition called pulmonary embolism.
An IVC filter tries to stop those clots. Most IVC filters resemble a tiny basket, star, or spider made from metal wire—but small enough to fit inside the inferior cava vena or IVC, the main blood vein carrying blood up from the lower half of the body. If there’s a blood clot, it should get caught in the IVC filter until it dissolves, while normal blood passes by. This prevents the clot from ever reaching the lungs.
The idea behind these devices has been around since the 1960s, but the FDA has only been approving them since the early 2000s. Since then, several manufacturers have marketed IVC filters, including C.R. Bard, Cook, Cordis, and others.
Unfortunately, IVC filters have also shown a number of complications—some of them unexpected, and many of them potentially life-threatening.
What are the safety risks of IVC filters?
Since the early 2000s, there have been two main types of problems with IVC filters:
- Early IVC filters were recommended for permanent use. In other words, the filter would be surgically implanted, and then left in the blood vein long-term—possibly for life. We now know that this tends to result in an increased risk of complicationsas time goes on. Surgeons today are generally advised to remove an IVC filter as soon as the risk of blood clots has passed.
- Even temporary IVC filters can fracture or cause complications. With time, manufacturers switched their focus from permanent IVC filters to “retrievable” IVC filters designed to be removed after a few months or years. However, even among these filters, there is a risk of the device fracturing inside the body, embedding in the walls of the IVC vein, or causing other health risks.
The most common issues that arise from IVC filters are:
- The device fractures, and a piece “migrates” through the body
- The device tilts out of place in the blood vein
- The device embeds itself in the wall of the blood vein
- The device, or a fragment of it, perforates the blood vein
Any of these can lead to serious harm. They can cause internal bleeding, infection, organ damage, or even pulmonary embolism itself. Pulmonary embolism can result in heart and breathing issues, permanent organ damage to the lungs, or sudden death.
How do I know if I have grounds for an IVC filter lawsuit?
If you or your loved one have ever had an IVC filter, it’s worth your time to talk to a lawyer and find out if you may have a claim. There have already been more than 3,000 IVC filter lawsuits filed nationwide, involving manufacturers such as Cordis, Cook, C.R. Bard, B. Braun, Rex Medical and others. Many patients have recovered settlements of a million dollars or more.
You may have grounds for a lawsuit under a variety of conditions:
- You or your loved one had an IVC filter and suffered health complications
- You or your loved one had an IVC filter, and you’re not sure whether it was related to the complications suffered
- You or your loved one had an IVC filter and there were no symptoms of side-effects that you know of
It’s important to understand that if your medical device was defective, you may have already been put at risk whether you are aware of any symptoms or not. And in some types of lawsuits, all patients who had a certain kind of device may be entitled to a share of the settlement. Patients who suffered serious complications may be entitled to much more, including money for:
- All your medical costs
- All future or long-term care costs
- Any lost work time or lost earning potential
- Pain and suffering damages to help offset your personal losses
- If someone lost their life, the family may have a right to a wrongful death claim
We believe this money can help a family recover when dealing with the terrible aftermath of a health complication—or even stay financially strong after the loss of a loved one.
If you or your family think you may have been affected by any type of IVC filter, talk to a lawyer.
Talk to a IVC Filter Lawsuit Lawyer for Free
John Foy & Associates has spent more than 20 years working for the victims—never the big medical companies. We don’t charge anything unless we win you money. And we know how to get results. Let us give you a FREE consultation and help you determine if you may have a case. Contact us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.