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Infections, Fractures & Other Complications with Bard PowerPort: Are Patients Legally Covered? 

When medical devices add another layer of physical discomfort other than catering to what they were used for, the patient’s health is at risk. This i

When medical devices add another layer of physical discomfort other than catering to what they were used for, the patient’s health is at risk. This is the predicament that most Bard PowerPort users have had to face, and the brand has been subject to past settlements and recent injury lawsuits. 

Almost every legal claim that C.R. Bard, Inc.’s PowerPort set of implantable ports was defectively designed. Additionally, the manufacturer failed to raise awareness about the health hazards linked to the port device.

Simply put, Bard PowerPort gets implanted beneath the patient’s skin and has been designed to provide medicine and various other fluids in the bloodstream of the patient at a high speed. The device is typically used for cancer patients who require frequent chemotherapy treatment over a long period.

The current lawsuits against Bard PowerPort allege that the device is vulnerable to pinching off, fracturing, and breaking, which maximizes the risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis), embolism, blood infection, clots, and puncture of a vein. In 2023, several product liability lawsuits against this port device were filed by patients for multiple injuries.

This article will focus on the health complications that result from Bard PowerPort and how affected patients can ask for legal compensation.

More Bard Chemo Port Lawsuits Expected

According to the lawsuit updates for 2023, close to 70 personal injury lawsuits were filed against Bard PowerPort by people hurt by it. In March 2024, AboutLawsuits.com reported that, considering the identical complaints raised in almost every Bard Power Port lawsuit, the U.S. Judicial Panel on MDL centralized every complaint in August 2023. The claims had been transferred to David G. Campbell, who is the U.S. District Judge in the Arizona district.

Working with the parties, Judge Campbell has been aiming to develop an organizational format for the litigation to start a bellwether procedure. It will lead to a set of initial trial dates for testing the complaints and evidence presented through the litigation process.

The concerned parties came up with a joint memorandum highlighting 113 pending claims in the MDL. Out of this count, 45 claims were directly filed, and the remaining 66 had been transferred to the MDL from various courts nationwide.

According to the memorandum, the plaintiffs have reported several injuries, such as:

  • 44 catheter infection claims
  • 27 lawsuits including device migration and fractures inside patient bodies
  • 9 chemo port fractures that didn’t lead to migration
  • 19 claims of blood clots or thrombosis

The lawyers have already conveyed to the port device manufacturer that they anticipate 2,000 and more Bard chemo port lawsuits. Several plaintiffs today are awaiting their medical records and other healthcare data to establish that the port device was the reason for their surgeries.

The Lawsuit Update for March 2024

The previous year, all the parties had been asked to submit 24 representative cases by July 1st, 2024, to get included in the early port catheter lawsuit bellwether pool. Plaintiffs needed to file their claims by April 1st, 2024, to qualify for this inclusion.

After that, about 48 bellwether cases were meant to undergo a case-specific discovery process and get worked on for the trial. It was supposed to be done before it gets narrowed to six claims to be forwarded to trial, to understand how injuries might respond to particular testimony and evidence that will be repeated during the litigation process.

After the discovery process, the parties were meant to try to agree on the six bellwether claims. The final date for this is March 10, 2025. Trials are expected to start by the end of 2025 or the beginning of 2026.

The outcomes of the initial bellwether trials wouldn’t have any significant effect on other pending claims on MDL. Despite that, adding claims that get filed after the deadline of April 1st might affect the settlement negotiations or any initiative taken to resolve the increasing claims.

Safety Concerns and Adverse Event Reports For the Port Device

There is a chance of medical devices posing risks to patients. That aside, even the FDA cannot correctly assess medical devices for their efficacy and safety. Therefore, any adverse events linked with any medical equipment should be documented in details and publicly reported. 

It’s the only way through which the physicians, FDA, and the public at large can recognize the probable safety concerns and defects present in medical equipment. For several years, many unfortunate events were reported to FDAs ‘MAUDE’ (Manufacturer and User Facility Device Experience database), which depicted the ways surveillance for safety issues and potential defects were carried out. 

C.R. Bard, Inc. could conceal the negative events because of ‘pinch-off events’ in the PowerPort devices. They claimed that the complications were risks that were already known or it was the fault of the surgeon who implanted the device. Hence, it is necessary to stay updated on safety concerns and stand up for patient care. It’s the only way to reduce adverse outcomes and make sure that patients receive quality care. 

How To Seek Legal Compensation?

Have you faced any physical discomfort or hazards after getting the Bard PowerPort implanted in your body? If so, you must seek legal aid to address the issue and seek compensation to cover the damages you’ve suffered.

TorHoerman Law states that consulting a lawyer is the best way to get legal assistance. A lawyer will go through your case and medical records to decide whether you are eligible to file a lawsuit. Once you are, trust them for the guidance they share with you and follow it. For instance, gather the evidence they ask you to, such as a medical diagnosis, physical symptoms you faced before and after the device implantation, surgery reports, medicines used, and the like.

They will use this data to build a strong case that will establish your suffering in court. That way, you have a higher chance of receiving fair compensation, which can vary based on the individual case history.

In conclusion, the Bard Power Port has been infamous for its side effects, which made patients suffer immensely and affected their quality of life. It is necessary to be aware of the health hazards and ask questions about your well-being before opting for this device. However, if the harm has already been done, you need to seek both medical and legal aid.

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