California Medical Recall Attorneys
Medical devices and drugs are meant to improve the health of sick and injured patients. Some drugs and devices, however, can cause more damage -- even when used properly. Defective medical devices can cause not only significant physical injuries, but also severe financial burdens and emotional distress for victims and their families. It is important that potentially dangerous devices are recalled right away and that negligent corporations are held accountable for the harm they cause. The same applies to dangerous drugs, which can lead to severe health complications or even death.
Recalls and the Food and Drug Administration
When a medical device has the potential to cause a serious health problem, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) may step in to either investigate the product or to issue a recall of the device. Medical devices that pose a greater threat than they prevent may be pulled from the market entirely. The FDA will label the recalled devices as either a Class I, II or II recall based on the degree of danger they present. All recalled products are potentially hazardous, but Class I recalls involve products that can cause serious complications.
Major Recent Recalls
It is important for patients to discuss their treatment with their doctors so they can make informed decisions. Some of the most high-profile medical device recalls include:
- Transvaginal Mesh: These devices are commonly used to treat and provide relief to women who have experienced a condition known as pelvic organ prolapse. Manufacturers of these devices, such as American Medical Systems, C.R. Bard and Cook Medical, regularly face litigation because they failed to warn doctors and patients about serious side effects such as erosion of the mesh, severe pain and infection. Recalled mesh devices include the ProtoGen Mesh made by Boston Scientific, ObTape made by Mentor Corporation and Gynecare mesh products manufactured by Ethicon.
- Contraceptives: Pfizer is one of many large pharmaceutical companies that have recently faced product liability lawsuits for defective birth control pills. They recalled a number of Lo/Ovral-28 tablets and generic Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets that were packaged wrongly.
- Knee Replacements: Knee implants should last well over a decade, but some devices fail within only a few years. For example, DePuy Orthopedics, a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary, has recently recalled a knee replacement device that can cause fractures and other serious complications.
- Metal Hip Implants: DePuy is also facing a number of lawsuits relating to faulty all-metal hip implants that have caused crippling pain and a high level of blood toxicity among patients. These implants also have an abnormally high rate of failure.
- Medications: Drugs are often recalled if there are reports of serious complications. Zofran, for example, is a drug used to treat chemotherapy patients who are suffering from nausea. It was recalled after it became apparent that it could cause potentially fatal heart arrhythmia.
- Vascular Stents: Vascular stents are self-expanding devices used to improve the space in blood vessels. Bard LifeStent was issued a Class I recall for failing to deploy.
If You Have Been Affected
There are a number of potential side effects when using a prescription drug or medical device. It is important for doctors to inform their patients of all of the potential medical issues that are considered normal. If the patient begins to suffer from abnormal symptoms, he or she will know to seek out immediate medical attention.
Do not hesitate to speak with your doctor if you are experiencing any symptoms and side effects from your treatment. It is also advisable to review the official website of the FDA. It will help you find out if the medical device or drug you are using has been recalled or is currently under investigation. There may even be an ongoing class action suit against the manufacturer of the defective medical device or drug.
Product Liability Claims and Class Action Lawsuits
There are a number of legal options available for victims of defective medical devices and defective drugs. For example, if you required revision surgery after receiving a defective hip implant, you may be able to file a product liability claim against the manufacturer of the faulty device. You will have to prove that the product was defective and that the defect directly resulted in your losses.
When a large number of people experience similar harm, the lawsuits may be combined into a defective medical device class action suit. This is a worthwhile legal option for victims of minor injuries, but if you have suffered great harm because of a defective medical device, you may want to file an individual claim. If successful, you could receive support for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and other related damages.
California Medical Recall Attorneys
The experienced California medical recall attorneys at Bisnar | Chase have represented those who have been seriously injured as the result of faulty medical devices and dangerous drugs. We have what it takes to fight against large corporations and help injured victims and their families secure fair and full compensation for their significant losses. Please contact us at 1-800-561-4887 to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.