One of the most severe, life-threatening complication of the Bard Recovery and Bard G2 IVC filters is the risk of filter fracture. When this occurs, shards of the broken device can cause serious injury to the heart, lungs, or other internal organs. Unfortunately, it is often impossible to surgically remove the fractured pieces of the implant.
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.
IVC Filter Fracture
The Bard Recovery and Bard G2 IVC filters have been associated with a risk of IVC filter fracture, which can be deadly. The Recovery has been linked to a 40% fracture rate after 5.5 years, and Bard withdrew this device from the U.S. market in 2005. The Recovery was re-designed as the G2 IVC filter, but the G2 has been linked to a 12% fracture rate.
An IVC filter is a medical device that is used to reduce the risk of pulmonary embolism. Its design resembles a wire cage with long, thin legs (known as “struts”). These devices are surgically implanted in a patient’s inferior vena cava, which is the vein between the heart and lungs. The device is supposed to trap blood clots before they enter the lungs and cause a pulmonary embolism.
The Recovery and G2 are retrievable filters, meaning that they are only supposed to be temporary implants, and they should be removed when the patient is not at risk of a pulmonary embolism. If the devices are not removed, the risk of filter fracture increases substantially. The FDA published a Safety Warning to address this issue, but injuries continue to occur.
When an IVC filter fractures, the broken fragments of the device can become embolizations. They can travel in the bloodstream, and they may become trapped in a major internal organ (usually the heart or lungs). Embolizations can also erode into the body or perforate internal organs, which can be deadly.
Studies of IVC Filter Fractures
- In February 2012, researchers published this study linking the Bard G2 IVC filter to a 12% fracture rate. Furthermore, only 53.4% of patients could have the fractured pieces successfully removed. The researchers also found an increasing risk of filter fracture over time.
- Another study published in February 2012 found that fractured pieces of the IVC filter’s struts (the thin wire legs) are frequently impossible to remove. The study also found that fractured pieces of the filters can embed in the heart, lungs, inferior vena cava, and other organs.
- This study linked the Bard Recovery IVC filter to a 40% fracture rate after 5.5 years. Some people suffered embolizations of the filter to their pulmonary arteries, femoral veins, heart, and kidney vein. In one case, doctors could not locate the missing piece of the IVC filter.
- In 2010, researchers who published this study warned that “The Bard Recovery and Bard G2 filters had high prevalences of fracture and embolization, with potentially life-threatening sequelae.” They were specifically concerned that filter fragments could care life-threatening heart injuries, including cardiac tamponade, ventricular tachycardia, and death.
- In 2012, the Journal of Anesthesiology published this study describing the case of a man who suffered life-threatening heart injury many years after his IVC filter fractured. Doctors did not remove the wire fragment, and it later caused him to suffer from cardiac tamponade and acute pericardial effusion.
IVC Filter Fractures and Heart Injuries
When an IVC filter fractures, the wire fragments of the device can travel to the heart and cause severe injury. IVC filter heart injuries may include:
- Cardiac tamponade
- Hemorrhagic pericardial effusion
- Ventricular tachycardia
- Perforation of the heart
- Embedment / erosion into the heart
- Laceration of the heart
- And more
Fractured IVC filters can also cause injury to other internal organs — especially the lungs, the inferior vena cava, and other internal organs. When this occurs, emergency surgery is usually necessary.
IVC Filter Lawsuit Information
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