PHILADELPHIA (Jan. 11, 2015) – A recent update to the NBC Nightly News investigation that aired in September 2015 again has raised serious questions about why medical device manufacturer C.R. Bard, Inc. continued to sell and market its inferior vena cava (IVC) filters even after it became aware that its filters were failing and causing death and other serious injuries at rates significantly higher than other similar devices.
The NBC News investigation linked 27 deaths and hundreds of problems with the Recovery model IVC filters made by New Jersey-based C.R. Bard, Inc. According to documents obtained by NBC, Bard knew the Recovery filter had “higher rates of relative risk for death, filter fracture, and movement than all of its competitors.”
At least 12 deaths have been linked to the G2 series of IVC filters also made by Bard. The G2 filter series was intended to remedy issues with the Recovery filter and was supposed to be safer; however, company documents indicate that Bard saw problems with the G2 filter within months of FDA approval. Bard’s internal records note “problems with migration, tilting, and perforation” in the G2 series filters, according to the NBC investigation.
The follow-up piece by NBC, “Why Did Firm Keep Selling Problem Blood-Clot Filters?” questions why neither Bard nor the FDA recalled the filters instead of keeping them on market for five years and allowing more than 160,000 of the dangerous filters to be implanted in patients. Dr. William Kuo, a Stanford interventional radiologist, doubts the Bard G2 device ever was safe for use and questions reliance on medical device manufacturers and the FDA to ensure the safety of medical devices for patients.
Lopez McHugh represents nearly 200 people across the country who claim they have been injured or a family member has been killed by complications related to a Bard IVC filter. “We have been working for years to draw attention to the serious public health threat that these devices can pose,” said partner Ramon Rossi Lopez, who has been leading Lopez McHugh’s IVC filter lawsuit legal team. “NBC Nightly News deserves applause for dedicating their time and exhaustive effort to help bring this situation to light on a national scale.”
An IVC filter is a small, cone-shaped, cage-like medical device implanted into a patient’s inferior vena cava, the large vein that carries oxygen-depleted blood from the lower body up to the heart. IVC filters are intended to prevent a blood clot from reaching the heart or lungs. About 250,000 Americans are implanted with IVC filters each year, industry statistics show.
Lopez McHugh LLP represents numerous individuals who have been injured by Bard Recovery filters in lawsuits against the manufacturer. It is believed that tens of thousands of Americans are implanted with Bard Recovery filters, or the G2 model which replaced the Recovery. More plaintiffs are expected to come forward as the risks related to the long-term use of retrievable IVC filters become more widely known.
On Aug. 17, 2015, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered the transfer of all federal lawsuits filed over the allegedly defective IVC filters made by Bard to the District of Arizona. Ramon Rossi Lopez, founding partner of Lopez McHugh LLP, was appointed as a co-leader of the plaintiffs’ steering committee shortly after the MDL formation. Twenty-two Bard IVC filter cases were initially transferred to the MDL; that number has now climbed to 87 cases and continues to grow.
Depositions of Bard representatives are already underway and Kay Fuller, the former Bard Senior Regulatory Affairs Specialist, is scheduled to be deposed this month. Kay Fuller was interviewed in conjunction with the NBC Nightly News investigation and says the company didn’t want to hear the concerns she voiced over the Recovery filter.
In the televised portion of the NBC interview, Fuller denied signing the application to the FDA for approval of the device, raising the question of forgery.
Lopez McHugh has compiled resources to assist those who believe they may have been injured by a defective IVC filter. For more information, please visit the firm’s IVC filter page.
About Lopez McHugh, LLP: For more than 30 years, the attorneys at the nationally-recognized plaintiffs’ law firm of Lopez McHugh have been obtaining justice for their clients by battling defendants who take advantage of consumers such as pharmaceutical giants, nursing homes and medical professionals, insurance companies, auto manufacturers, and the manufacturers of defective medical devices.
Carrie R. Capouellez, Esquire
1123 Admiral Peary Way, Quarters K
Philadelphia, PA 19112
Telephone: (215) 952-6910
Facsimile: (215) 952-6914
# # #
ATTORNEY ADVERTISING. Attorneys at Lopez McHugh LLP are licensed in Pennsylvania, California, New Jersey, New York, and Texas. We may associate with attorneys from other states. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. Past results are not a guarantee of future performance.