Medical devices can save lives, and make the quality of a person’s life so much better too. When they go wrong, however, the results can be disastrous. There have been many famous medical device recall lawsuits over the last few decades. Here’s a quick look at some of the biggest and most interesting in recent memory.
The Hamilton G5 Ventilator
The Hamilton G5 ventilator was a Class I recall because of a serious problem with the device. there were 1,128 ventilators affected by the recall, but fortunately there were no injuries or deaths. The device would stop working, silently, with no warning sound or alert, when the operator pressed the button to attach the mask to the user. If the problem were to go un-noticed for long enough, then the patient could be starved of oxygen and die.
Metal on Metal Implants
Metal on metal implants were attempted as a way of making a hip implant that was suitable for younger people who wanted to remain active. The problem with these is that the cup and the implant would rub against each other, causing metal particles to shed into the body, which could cause metal poisoning, and potentially lead to complications that required further surgery.
The Attune Knee Lawsuits
The Attune Knee replacement system designed by DePuy is the subject of a lawsuit, because the surgical glue that was used in the device is not strong enough to hold the device in place, attached to the patient’s tibia. When the device fails, it can cause significant pain and loss of mobility.
Hernia Mesh Lawsuits
Some people who have had hernia meshes fitted have found that the mesh is failing far more quickly than expected. A failed hernia mesh can cause infection, organ damage, chronic pain, and lead to a need for additional surgeries. The hernia mesh is intended to help a patient to recover from hernia surgery more quickly, but if the mesh moves or shrinks then it can cause more problems than it solves.
The Stockert 3T Heater-Cooler System
The Stockert 3T Heater-Cooler System is a device that is used during cardiothoracic sugery. The manufacturer, LivanNova PLC, is having a lot of lawsuits filed against them, because the product has been found to carry the risk of transmitting bacteria to patints during open-chest cardiac surgeries. The bacteria that fcan be transmitted – mycobacterium chimera, can cause serious infections which could prove fatal – even after years of treatment with antibiotics.
There are many other famous medical device recall lawsuits, including lawsuits for shoulder replacements, IVC filters, and even the imaging dvices that are used in hospitals for diagnostic procedures. These lawsuits may seem worrying to the average patient, but it’s important to understand how class action lawsuits work and that the vast majority of surgeries and interventions go well. The FDA requires devices to go through extensive testing before being deployed as well. Recalls happen quickly if an issue is found, so you should trust your doctor and listen to their advice.