In most cases, the use of bed rails adds safety by preventing patients from falling out of bed. Although bed rails may be appropriate in many situations, in some cases, they may endanger patients — especially those who are older, frail, or confused. In the last decade, hundreds of people have been seriously injured or killed when they became entrapped and suffocated between a bed rail and a mattress or a bed frame.
Do I Have a Bed Rail Injury Lawsuit? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged. If you or a loved one has been injured by a bed rail, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a bed rail injury lawsuit.
UPDATE: Vaunn Medical Recalls 102,000 Bed Rails
In March 2023, about 102,000 Vaunn Medical Bed Assist Rails were recalled because they pose a serious risk of entrapment, suffocation, asphyxia and death. The recall involves two models: M876N-AAWH-APVM and M876N-SABK-APVM. They were sold online from December 2018 through December 2022.
LumaRail Bed Rails Recalled After 1 Death
In February 2023, Platinum Health recalled about 53,000 LumaRail Bed Assist Rails because “users can become entrapped within the rail, or between the rail and mattress,” posing a risk of entrapment, asphyxia, suffocation and death.
Tragically, one death was reported in October 2021 when an 81-year-old man at a nursing home died after becoming entrapped between the bed rail and his mattress.
Platinum Health recalled bed rails that were sold nationwide from July 2015 through December 2022, including the following models:
- Bed Assist Rail with Legs (model PHB4000)
- Free Standing Bed Assist Rail (model PHB6000)
- DoubleSafe Bed Assist Rail (model PHB7000D)
3 Deaths Linked to Adult Portable Bed Rails
In June 2022, safety officials warned consumers not to use 285,000 Adult Portable Bed Rails after they were linked to the deaths of 3 elderly people who became trapped and suffocated.
The manufacturers, Mobility Transfer Systems and Metal Tubing USA Inc., both refused to issue a recall or provide a remedy for consumers.
The warning involves the following models of bed rails:
- Freedom Grip (model 501)
- Freedom Grip Plus (model 502)
- Freedom Grip Travel (model 505)
- Reversible Slant Rail (model 600)
- Transfer Handle (model 2025)
- Easy Adjustable (model 2500)
- 30-Inch Security Bed Rail, single-sided (model 5075)
- 30-Inch Security Bed Rail – Extra Tall, single-sided (model 5075T)
- 30-Inch Security Bed Rail, double-sided (model 5085)
- 30-Inch Security Bed Rail – Extra Tall, double-sided (model 5085T)
Endurance® Hand Bed Rails Recalled After 2 Deaths
In December 2021, Essential Medical Supply announced a recall for about 272,000 Endurance® Hand Bed Rails after the death of an 86-year-old man at his home in California who became trapped between his mattress and the bed rail and suffocated to death.
“When attached to an adult’s bed, users can become entrapped within the bed rail or between the rail and the side of the mattress. This poses a serious entrapment hazard and risk of death by asphyxiation.”
The following bed rails are included in the recall:
- Hand Bed Rail (model P1410)
- Hand Bed Rail with Pouch (model P1410-P)
- Hand Bed Rail with Floor Support (model P1411)
- Hand Bed Rail with Floor Support with Pouch (model P1411-P).
Carex Bed Rails Recalled After 3 Deaths
In December 2021, Compass Health Brands announced a recall for nearly 105,000 Carex® Adult Portable Bed Rails after 3 elderly people suffocated when they became trapped between the bed rail and their mattress.
Th following products are included in the recall:
- Carex brand Bed Support Rails (model P566)
- Carex brand Easy Up 2-in-1 Bed Rails (model P569)
Drive DeVilbiss Recalls 500,000 Bed Rails After 2 Deaths
In December 2021, Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare recalled more than 500,000 Bed Assist Handles and Bed Assist Rails after the deaths of 2 elderly people who became trapped and suffocated to death. The recall involves the following bed rails:
- Bed Assist Handle: Sold on Amazon as “Home Bed Assist Handle” (Model #15064)
- Bed Assist Rail with Folding Board: Sold on Amazon as “Home Bed Assist Grab Rail with Bed Board” (Model #15062)
- Home Bed Assist Handle: Sold on Amazon as Home Bed Assist Handle (Model #RTL15073)
- Home Bed Assist Handle: Sold on Amazon as Adjustable Height Home Bed Assist Handle (Model #RTL15063-ADJ)
UPDATE: Bed Handles Recalled After 3 Deaths
May 20, 2014 — The CPSC has announced a recall for 113,000 bed handles after they were linked to three deaths. The recall comes almost exactly three years after the consumer-advocacy group Public Citizen called for a ban on these bed handles, citing four deaths. Click here to read more.
What is the problem?
Bed rails are adjustable metal or plastic bars that are placed on hospital beds and in nursing homes to help patients pull themselves up and get out of bed. They are also used to prevent people from rolling out of bed.
Unfortunately, some patients can be trapped between bed rails and a mattress, which can cause severe injury or even death. Patients who are elderly, frail, or confused are most likely to become caught, trapped, entangled, strangled, or suffocated between a bed rail, a mattress, or the bed frame.
Bed Rail Injuries
Data compiled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has found that from 2003 until May 2012, more than 36,000 people were treated in emergency rooms for bed rail injuries, and 150 people died. Most people who were seriously injured were older adults.
Bed rails are associated with the following serious risks:
- Strangling, suffocation, or serious bodily injury, or death when the patient is caught between bed rails, the opening of the rails, or between the bed rail and a mattress.
- Patients may crawl over the rail and fall from greater heights, increasing their risk of injury.
- Patients may be hindered from getting out of bed or going to the bathroom.
- These risks are exacerbated when bed rails are improperly matched to a bed frame, causing a wide gap between the bed rail and the mattress.
- Serious injuries can also occur when the bed rail is improperly installed, or objects such as supports remain when the bed rail is removed.
FDA and Bed Rail Warnings
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has published several safety guidelines for caregivers about the dangers of bed rails. Between January 1985 and January 2010, the agency has received 828 incident reports, including 493 deaths, 141 nonfatal injuries, and 194 incidents where staff had to intervene to prevent patient injuries. The FDA continues to receive reports of patient deaths and injuries linked to bed rails.
According to federal guidance from the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), published in June 2000:
“It is important to note that side rails present an inherent safety risk, particularly when the patient is elderly or disoriented. … The patient is at risk for entrapment, entanglement, or falling from a greater height posed by the raised side rail, with a possibility for sustaining greater injury or death than if he/she had fallen from the height of a lowered bed without raised side rails.”
Do I have a Bed Rail Injury Lawsuit?
Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged.
Collen’s amazing success in the courtroom and well known dedication to his clients has earned him the recognition of his peers as one of The Top Trial Lawyers in Texas.”
The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more than 100 years experience, participation in over 600 jury trials and $260 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact us for a free case review.