When you're injured, you expect the best in medical care. The medical device industry is driven by innovation. Without the proper testing, though, these devices can actually cause more damage. In extreme cases, their use could even lead to death. At Huber Thomas & Marcelle, we fight for victims who have been harmed by defective medical devices. We're prepared to take on large medical companies by working with a team of world-class medical experts. Our goal is to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve and that those who have done harm are held accountable.
What leads to defective medical devices?
The medical device industry is booming. Innovation now allows more patients wider access to life-saving and life-changing devices. This boom comes at a major cost, though.
Increased competition has led some companies to rush their devices to market without the extensive testing they need. Shortcuts lead to defects. From 2001 to 2009, the Expert Institute found that the number of serious adverse events rose 17% each year.
That's a huge number.
Put in straightforward terms, it means that year over year, more people are hospitalized, disabled, or killed by defective medical devices.
Competition is a major cause of this, but there are others, including:
- Updates to the FDA approval process
- An 11% year-over-year increase in Class III device approvals (the highest-risk medical devices, like pacemakers and heart valves)
- Increased submissions for multi-use and multi-procedure devices
The FDA monitors defective devices in their Medical Device Recalls Database. Often, a manufacturer or distributor will initiate the recall and then notify the FDA. Healthcare professionals can also provide evidence to the FDA and ask them to recall a device.
What are the most common defective medical devices?
Any device could cause harm, but certain types lead to more adverse events than others. The same Expert Institute report found twenty products that led to the most adverse events. They included:
- Insulin pumps
- Blood glucose tests
- Pacemaker electrodes
- Coronary stents
- Surgical mesh
- Knee prostheses
- Hip prostheses
There are a few common types of defects to be aware of:
- Marketing: When companies don't properly communicate risks or proper use
- Design: Defects that occur during the design process, leading to products that fail or are a danger to patient
- Manufacturing: Occurs when a manufacturing error leads to a defect
What are the risks with defective medical devices?
In the worst cases, these defects don't lead to just minor problems. They can require extensive revision surgery or create long-term issues. For example, a recently-recalled knee prosthetic failed prematurely after implant.
- Instability and balance issues
- Unusual swelling and severe pain
- Decreased range of motion
For most of these patients, their only option was to undergo another surgery.
Revision surgeries to remove defective devices aren't easy. They're often more painful and more invasive than the original surgery. Other risks include a greater chance of:
- Post-op chronic pain
- Bone loss
- Soft tissue damage
Get help from trial-proven defective medical device lawyers
At Huber Thomas & Marcelle, we're committed to helping people heal after the trauma of a medical device injury or incident. That's because we know it's not a one-time event or surgery. These defects can lead to a host of issues, including:
- Ongoing medical costs and care
- Additional surgeries
- Specialized equipment
- Lost wages and work
- Mental or psychological challenges
If you've been harmed by a company's failure to properly test a product, you could be entitled to compensation. Our team of defective medical device lawyers is committed to helping you understand the complexities of bringing a case like this to court. We pride ourselves on our excellent trial success record. But, more than that, we're proud that we've been able to help so many of our clients through a difficult period.
Don't hesitate to give us a call today to discuss your situation.