IVC filters prevent blood clots from traveling to the lungs, heart, and brain in patients who cannot take blood-thinning drugs.
These small, cage-like devices are inserted into the vena cava, the body’s largest vein, which carries blood from the lower body to the heart.
IVC filters lawsuit can be either permanent or temporary in some cases; temporary filters are left in patients for far too long, causing serious problems and injuries.
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Dangers of IVC Filters
There are two IVC filter types: permanent and temporary, or retrievable.
Retrievable filters are designed for short-term protection, to be removed once the risk of blood clots resolves, yet are associated with higher rates of complications.
The longer an IVC filter is inside a patient, the more likely he or she is to suffer debilitating side effects.
Since 2005, the FDA has received more than 1,000 reports of IVC filter problems. These devices have alarmingly high fracture rates, which can cause organ perforation and other life-threatening complications.
Parts of the IVC filter may break off inside the body causing fragments to migrate to the heart, lungs or other nearby organs.
A fractured IVC filter may cause problems including:
- Lower limb deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
- Filter migration, fracture or embolization
- Vein perforation, closing or blocking
- Fluid buildup around the heart
- Internal bleeding
- Difficulty removing the device
- Sudden death