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IVC Filter Fracture

IVC Filter Fracture

The Bard Recovery and Bard G2 IVC filters have been linked to up to a 40% rate of filter fracture and embolizations, with potentially life-threatening consequences. If the fractured pieces of the filter travel to an internal organ (usually the heart or lungs), they can cause severe organ damage or death. Unfortunately, doctors are often unable to remove fractured pieces of a defective IVC filter.

What You Can Do & How We Can Help

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently evaluating IVC filter cases in all 50 states, regardless of whether you have been injured or not. If you or somebody you know was implanted with an IVC filter, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Defective Medical Device Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

IVC Filter Fracture

The risk of IVC filter fracture is one of the most serious complications of the Bard Recovery and Bard G2 IVC filter. These devices are implanted in a patient’s inferior vena cava (IVC), which is the blood vessel between the heart and the lungs. They are designed like a wire cage, with thin wire legs (called “struts”) that catch blood clots before they travel into the patient’s lungs and cause a pulmonary embolism. The Recovery and G2 are retrievable IVC filters — they are supposed to be removed after the patient is no longer at risk of a pulmonary embolism. The risk of filter fracture increases the longer these temporary devices remain in a patient’s body.

The Bard Recovery IVC filter was linked to a 40% fracture rate after 5.5 years. Bard withdrew the Recovery filter in 2005. The company re-designed the Recovery and re-named it the G2, claiming the improved device was less likely to fracture or migrate. Unfortunately, researchers have linked the G2 to a 12% fracture rate.

When an IVC filter fractures, the broken pieces of the device can become an embolization — they travel in the bloodstream. If they travel to an internal organ (such as the heart, lungs, kidneys, or other area of the body) they can cause severe internal injury.

Studies of IVC Filter Fractures

  • This study, published in February 2012, found that the Bard G2 IVC filter is associated with a 12% rate of filter fractures. The researchers also found that doctors successfully removed fractured pieces of the device in just 53.4% of cases. They warned that the risk of fracture increases over time.
  • This study found that fractured filter struts (the spider-like legs of the device) are often impossible to remove. The study described cases where the fractured pieces embedded into the heart, inferior vena cava, lungs, or other blood vessels.
  • This study found that 40% of Bard Recovery IVC filters fractured after 5.5 years. The report described cases where the fractured pieces traveled to the pulmonary arteries, femoral veins, heart, and kidney vein. Other fragments embedded near the filter. One fragment could not be located.
  • This study, published in 2010, warned “The Bard Recovery and Bard G2 filters had high prevalences of fracture and embolization, with potentially life-threatening sequelae.” Many patients had filter fragments move into the heart, causing potentially life-threatening cardiac tamponade, ventricular tachycardia, and sudden death.
  • This study published in the Journal of Anesthesiology in 2012 described the case of a man who suffered cardiac tamponade and acute pericardial effusion as a complication of a small wire fragment from an IVC filter that was placed several years before the incident.

IVC Filter Fractures and Heart Injuries

IVC filter embolizations to the heart have been associated with several life-threatening heart injuries, including:

  • Cardiac tamponade
  • Hemorrhagic pericardial effusion
  • Ventricular tachycardia
  • Perforation of the heart
  • Embedment / erosion into the heart
  • Laceration of the heart
  • And more

Fractured pieces of an IVC filter can also travel to the lungs, perforate the inferior vena cava, or travel to other parts of the body and cause severe organ damage. The people who suffer these complications often require emergency surgery and intensive care.

Do I have an IVC Filter Lawsuit?

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is evaluating IVC filter cases in all 50 states, regardless of whether you were injured or not. If you or someone you know received an IVC filter implant, please contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit.

Please use the form below to contact our Defective Medical Device Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

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