Although the popularity of IVC filters is growing, there is concern about the safety of these devices. Several studies and the FDA have linked these devices to high rates of side effects — including filter fracture, embolization, erosion into the body, perforation of the heart or lungs, and many other severe, life-threatening side effects.
Need an IVC Filter Lawyer in Texas? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans. If you or a loved one has an IVC filter implant, even if you were not injured by side effects, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit.
What’s the problem with the IVC Filter?
The Bard IVC filter is a cage-like medical device that is implanted in a patient’s inferior vena cava (the vessel that carries blood from the heart into the lungs). It is designed to catch blood clots before they cause a pulmonary embolism, which occurs when blood clots block major vessels in the lungs and cause severe organ damage.
Although pulmonary embolisms can be life-threatening or deadly, there is growing evidence linking the IVC filters to severe side effects — especially when patients are implanted with removable filters that are never removed.
Studies of IVC Filter Side Effects
Several studies have raised concern about IVC filter side effects. One of the most recent studies was published in August 2012 in the American Journal of Medicine. Researchers found that IVC filters did not actually reduce mortality for stable people with a pulmonary embolism. Because most people with a pulmonary embolism are stable, researchers were concerned that “It appears the vast majority of filters that are placed in patients with a pulmonary embolism may not reduce mortality.”
The Archives of Internal Medicine published another study that linked IVC filters to a high rate of filter fractures and embolizations. The researchers found that most of the side effects occurred in patients who were implanted with removable IVC filters, but never had the devices removed — approximately 25% of patients with these devices had filter fracture or embolization. Five patients had an embolization to the heart, one patient died, and two others suffered severe heart injury.
FDA Warning About IVC Filter Side Effects
In 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a Safety Communication to warn about the severe side effects of the IVC filter. The agency received 921 adverse event reports related to the devices, and they were particularly concerned about removable filters that were never actually removed.
According to the FDA,
“The FDA is concerned that these retrievable IVC filters, intended for short-term placement, are not always removed once a patient’s risk for PE subsides. Known long term risks associated with IVC filters include but are not limited to lower limb deep vein thrombosis (DVT), filter fracture, filter migration, filter embolization and IVC perforation.”
IVC Filter Side Effects
Some of the most severe side effects of the Bard IVC filter include:
- Migration, shifting, or poor placement of the device. This could cause it to be ineffective at catching blood clots, or erode into the body.
- Filter fracture
- Fractured pieces of the filter could travel in the bloodstream and perforate blood vessels, the heart, or lungs
- Cardiac tamponade, hemorrhagic pericardial effusion (complications that occur when fluid builds up around the heart)
- Blood clots can clog the filter
- Narrowing or obstruction of the inferior vena cava
- Reduced or slower blood flow through the inferior vena cava, which can cause circulation problems
- Lower-limb edema (fluid build-up or swelling)
- Lower-limb Deep Vein Thrombosis (blood clots in the lower legs, which could cause a pulmonary embolism)
IVC Filter Lawsuit Information
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has an IVC Filter, our lawyers would like to speak with you immediately. We are evaluating every case regardless of whether you experienced side effects or not. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit. Please use the form below to contact our lawyers or call us toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 879-3040.
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The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more than 100 years experience, participation in over 600 jury trials and $60 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact us for a free Bard IVC filter lawsuit review.