For West Virginians facing serious health issues, the cure may sometimes be as bad or worse than the disease. Pulmonary embolism, for example, is a serious condition that occurs when a blood clot travels via the bloodstream from the veins deep in the legs into the lungs, making it difficult to breathe and potentially causing death. When a patient has already had one pulmonary embolism, doctors wish to prevent a recurrence. One means of prevention is a filter surgically placed in the inferior vena cava, the main vein in the body that leads from the legs to the heart. In theory, the filter allows normal blood flow to the heart and lungs while preventing clots from traveling to the vital organs.
Following treatment for a pulmonary embolism, one West Virginia man had such a filter implanted to prevent recurrence. According to the assurances he allegedly received, the device could be surgically retrieved with ease and was only necessary on a temporary basis. Nevertheless, the patient claims that the filter had migrated between the time of implantation and the date intended for its removal, causing the surgeons to terminate the procedure when they were unable to retrieve the device as planned.
As a result, the patient underwent a second surgery to remove the device and is now suing its manufacturers for damages relating to substantial medical expenses, loss of earnings and severe harm and injuries. The suit alleges that the manufacturers failed to give adequate warnings of the adverse effects caused by implantation of a defective medical device.
It is difficult and frustrating when a patient endures more pain and suffering stemming from measures taken to treat a medical condition. Patients and families affected by defective medical devices may wish to consult an attorney in regard to product liability.