Inferior vena cava (IVC) filters are medical devices implanted into patients who are at risk of suffering a sudden blockage of an artery in the lung or a pulmonary embolism (PE). The devices catch fragments of blood clots that form in the legs or pelvis before they reach the heart or lungs where blockages can cause severe health complications.
IVC filters are under increased scrutiny due to risks of fracture or failure. Malfunctions may result in death or serious injuries requiring corrective surgeries.
Who Is At Risk?
IVC filters are implanted into patients who have a history or risk of developing blood clots in the legs or pelvis, including patients who are:
- diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis,
- recent trauma victims,
- recovering from surgery,
- suffering from a pulmonary embolism,
- or otherwise determined to be at risk for a PE.
What Are the Complications?
When IVC filters fail, the device or its pieces may migrate to a patient’s heart and lungs, resulting in serious injury or death. The devices also can shift within a patient’s body, eventually reaching areas in the body that aren’t reachable by surgery.
In some cases, IVC filters are implanted into patients on a short-term basis. These devices, called retrievable IVC filters, are intended to be removed as soon as the risk of a PE decreases. In 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a safety alert suggesting a possible link between long term use of retrievable filters with an increased risk of fracture or failure.
We Can Fight for You
If you or someone you love has received an IVC filter and suffered severe health complications or death, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact our drug injury lawyers to get the legal help you need, today.
This law firm is not associated with, sponsored by, or affiliated with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.