IVC Filter Lawsuits Allege Plaintiffs Were Injured After The Company’s IVC Filters Fractured, Tilted Or Migrated From Its Original Implanted Position In The Inferior Vena Cava.
As the coordinated pretrial proceedings for IVC filter lawsuits against Cook Medical move forward, the medical company has asked for the bellwether trials for IVC filter lawsuits to be divided into two stages, with the first trial focused on liability and compensatory damages and the second trial on punitive damages. The lawsuits against Cook allege IVC filters have perforated plaintiffs’ vena cava, tilting, and breaking or fracturing and the fragments migrating to the patients’ heart or lungs. The IVC filters have also come under scrutiny by the FDA who has received numerous adverse event reports and issued a warning regarding the possible dangers of the IVC filter. (In Re: Bard IVC Filters Product Liability Litigation – MDL No. 2641) [fda.gov/MedicalDevices/Safety/AlertsandNotices/ucm221676., August 9, 2010].
Cook Medical submitted its request in a motion on August 24 to U.S. District Judge Richard L. Young, who is presiding over the multidistrict litigation (MDL) for the Cook Celect and Cook Gunther Tulip IVC filter lawsuits in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana. Cook explained that bifurcating compensatory damages and punitive damages will allow both parties and the jury to focus on liability and compensatory damages, which is the “meat” of the plaintiffs’ complaint “without being improperly influenced” by “potentially inflammatory financial information,” such as the company’s revenues, product margins, and net worth. Until plaintiffs can establish that punitive damages are likely to be an issue at trial, Cook, a privately held company, asked Judge Young not to allow plaintiffs to obtain the company’s “non-public” financial information during discovery.
“Punitive damages are used to punish defendants and deter them from doing similar acts in the future. Cook Medical has made its request to Judge Young, now plaintiffs are allowed to respond to the company’s motion before the judge rules on the issue,” says Dr. François Blaudeau, founder of Southern Med Law. The Firm is currently evaluating legal claims on behalf of individuals who allegedly experienced life-threatening complications associated with Cook Medical’s IVC filters, including perforation of the heart, lung or other organs, punctured vena cava, perforated aorta and death. If you have been injured by IVC filters contact one of the firm attorneys for a free legal evaluation by calling (205) 547-5525 or visit southernmedlaw.com for more information on this and other defective medical devices and to fill out a contact form.
Retrievable Inferior Vena Cava (IVC) filters have come under scrutiny by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) due to the number of complaints the agency received about the medical products. In August 2010, the FDA issued a warning concerning the small devices implanted into the inferior vena cava (the main vessel returning blood from the lower half of the body to the heart). The filters capture blood clots and prevent them from traveling to the lungs and causing a pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in the lungs). IVC filters are used by patients who are at risk of a pulmonary embolism, especially those who cannot take blood thinners or when the blood thinners did not work out for them. The FDA said it had received 921 adverse event reports about IVC filters since 2005, such as the device migrating from its original position, detachment of device components, the filter fracturing and perforation of the IVC. The agency indicated that the adverse events may be related to the filter remaining in a patient’s body long after the risk of a pulmonary embolism has subsided.
[fda.gov/MedicalDevices/Safety/AlertsandNotices/ucm221676., August 9, 2010]
The IVC filter complaints involving Cook’s IVC filters were consolidated by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) in October 2014. The federal panel centralized the cases because they contain similar allegations of the IVC filters perforating the plaintiffs’ vena cava, tilting, and breaking or fracturing and the fragments migrating to the patients’ heart or lungs. According to court documents, the plaintiffs and Cook Medical are to submit two lawsuits each for consideration as potential bellwether trial cases by mid-March 2016. Both parties have asked the court that the first bellwether trial be scheduled no earlier than September 15, 2016, court records show. In addition to the complaints against Cook Medical, there are also proceedings underway for IVC lawsuits against C.R. Bard in the U.S. District Court, District of Arizona (In Re: Bard IVC Filters Product Liability Litigation – MDL No. 2641).
About Southern Med Law And Filing a Cook Medical IVC Filter Lawsuit
The attorneys at Southern Med are an aggressive and effective team working for those who were harmed due to harmful medical devices. If you or a loved one were injured by a Bard retrievable IVC filter, please contact Southern Med Law today to learn more about your legal rights. Call today for a free, no obligation Bard IVC filter lawsuit review by filling out our online form at www.southernmedlaw.com, or by calling the office directly at 205-547-5525.
Southern Med Law
François M. Blaudeau, MD JD FACHE FCLM Esquire
2224 1st Avenue North
Birmingham, Alabama 35203
Medical Negligence/MedicalDevice/Pharma/Qui Tam