While advancements in medical technology often produce new life-saving techniques and devices, sadly, this is not always the case. Each year, thousands of patients across the country contract diseases and suffer life-altering injuries as a result of putting their trust in the manufacturers who create defective devices and the physicians who use them. If you are a victim of a defective medical device, our Houston injury lawyers may be able to help you obtain substantial financial compensation.
Medical Devices With Widely-Known Defects and Health Risks
There are several medical devices that are widely known to pose serious health risks to patients as a result of defects in their manufacture or design. For example, numerous knee and hip implant devices have been shown to cause internal damage to their recipients. Over just the last few years, we have seen cases affecting tens of thousands of individuals with devices manufactured by companies such as:
- DePuy Orthopedics (ASR and Pinnacle hip replacement devices)
- Stryker (Rejuvenate and ABG II hip replacement implants)
- Zimmer Holdings (NexGen knee replacement devices)
Lawsuits against these companies have yielded billions of dollars in compensation for victims and their families.
FDA’s 510(k) Process Allows for Sale of Medical Devices Without Clinical Testing
Part of the reason so many dangerous medical devices find their way to patients is what is known as the 510(k) approval process. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is tasked with approving new medical devices before they are introduced to the market. However, due to budgetary constraints, the FDA is not able to thoroughly test all new devices.
In order to streamline the process, the FDA uses the 510(k) approval process. This process allows manufacturers to bypass the FDA’s standard clinical testing and review requirements if they can demonstrate that a new device is “substantially equivalent” to another device that is already on the market.
The idea behind the 510(k) program is that it gets medical advancements into the hands of doctors sooner, giving the public access to improved technologies without waiting for the federal bureaucracy to run its course. However, as the cases mentioned above show, the results of this approach can be devastating for patients – many of whom are unaware that they are being treated with novel, untested devices.
Power Morcellators Shown to Cause Cancer Among Hysterectomy Patients
Another well-known dangerous medical device that was originally approved through the 510(k) program is the power morcellator. Power morcellators are surgical tools that many doctors use to perform hysterectomies. While initially favored for being minimally invasive, power morcellators are now widely known to significantly increase patients’ risk of contracting Leiomyosarcoma, or “LMS”.
Our injury lawyers have written extensively about the dangerous associated with power morcellators, and are closely monitoring the multidistrict litigation and federal lawmaking surrounding the power morcellator controversy. Read more about how power morcellators cause cancer.
Are You Suffering as a Result of a Defective Medical Device? Call Morrow & Sheppard LLP
Manufacturers of defective medical devices can – and should – be held financially responsible for their victims’ losses. At Morrow & Sheppard LLP, we help individuals nationwide seek financial compensation for illnesses and injuries caused by dangerous medical devices. To discuss your case with one of our experienced attorneys, contact our Houston law offices for a free consultation today.