For years, people have expected to receive fair treatment from medical facilities and to walk away from a health situation feeling better than before. With modern advances and technologies, medical devices should be the way that many people treat specific injuries and conditions they’re experiencing. While there are many good and effective medical devices on the market, unfortunately, some others have a history of being defective. When this happens, a patient can experience significant injuries, requiring even more medical attention.
The defective medical device attorneys at Peterson & Associates, P.C. in Kansas City believe it’s important for everyone to understand which devices are most commonly defective and what they can do moving forward.
Defective Medical Devices Under Investigation
Medical devices go through a rigorous approval process by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before reaching the public. Unfortunately, manufacturers often take shortcuts to avoid this long and strenuous requirement, which means some devices make it to market with risks still intact.
This may lead to recalls and potential investigations to determine whether the device was defective and caused serious harm to one or multiple patients. These are some of the defective medical devices that have been under investigation:
- Power morcellators
- Zimmer knee implants
- Transvaginal mesh
- Medical lasers
- Blood pressure cuffs
- Metal-on-metal hip replacements
- Arterial stents
- IVC filters
- Ultrasound devices
- DePuy hip implants and knee replacements
- Bair hugger blanket
The biggest issue regarding these devices is the fact that they are supposed to help patients, not cause more harm. Unfortunately, human and manufacturer errors present a number of short and long-term issues.
Determining Injury Liability
It’s often difficult to determine exactly what party is responsible for an injury. The doctor who prescribed the device may be liable if they knew that the device was risky and didn’t adequately explain this to a patient or offer alternatives. A hospital, a product distributor, or a seller might also be found at fault.
However, most of the time, especially in product investigations and recalls, it’s a manufacturer that’s likely at fault for production or design defects, inadequate warnings, or misleading marketing. Medical device manufacturers have a legal responsibility to make their devices safe, to meet FDA standards, and to warn of any risks or side effects involved in using the device.
Patients have a right to know the risks associated with a particular medical device so that they (and their doctors) can make more informed health care decisions. They also retain the right to file a lawsuit if they were injured due to some form of negligence.