Hole in Heart

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Hole in Heart

“Hole in the heart” birth defects can lead to lifelong complications for babies whose hearts fail to develop properly in the womb, and research has shown that the risk of hole in the heart birth malformations may be significantly higher in babies whose mothers take certain pharmaceutical drugs while pregnant, like the anti-nausea drug Zofran, which has been marketed off-label as a morning sickness treatment by GlaxoSmithKline. If your child was born with a severe hole in the heart birth defect, and you believe Zofran to be the cause, you may have grounds to file a birth defect lawsuit against the company responsible for designing and selling the pharmaceutical drug. Consult a knowledgeable birth defect lawyer today to explore your possible compensation options.

Zofran Lawsuit // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Types of Hole in the Heart Birth Defects

Hole in the heart birth defects are congenital malformations present at birth that affect the structure of a child’s heart and change the normal flow of blood through the heart. There are two main types of hole in the heart birth defects – atrial septal defects and ventricular septal defects – both of which affect the wall, called the septum, separating the two sides of the heart. An atrial septal defect (ASD) is characterized by a hole in the wall separating the two upper chambers of the heart, while a ventricular septal defect (VSD) occurs when there is a hole in the wall separating the two lower chambers of the heart. ASDs and VSDs both allow oxygen-rich blood to mix with oxygen-poor blood, which forces the heart to work harder and can result in high blood pressure and other serious complications.

Common Causes of Hole in the Heart Defects

Atrial and ventricular septal defects occur during the early stages of pregnancy, when a developing baby is especially vulnerable to harm. Although the cause of most congenital heart defects is unknown, a growing body of research has established a potential connection between maternal use of certain medications, like the anti-nausea drug Zofran, and an increased risk of hole in the heart birth defects in babies. According to a number of studies, babies exposed to Zofran (ondansetron) during pregnancy may face double the risk of hole in the heart birth defects like atrial septal defects and ventricular septal defects. Unfortunately, many women are unaware of this risk, nor do they realize that Zofran has never been approved by the FDA for use in pregnant women, and every year, approximately one million pregnant women in the United States take Zofran or its generic equivalent.

Long-Term Complications of Septal Defects

Hole in the heart birth defects can range in size, and small atrial septal defects or ventricular septal defects don’t typically affect how the heart works and don’t require any special treatment. Larger ASDs, however, allow more blood to leak from one atrium to the other, and may require open-heart surgery or a catheter procedure to repair. In babies born with larger VSDs, the heart’s extra workload can cause serious complications, like poor growth and heart failure. If the hole in the heart isn’t closed via open-heart surgery, the resulting high blood pressure can scar the arteries in the lungs.

The past few decades have resulted in considerable developments in the diagnosis and treatment of hole in the heart birth defects, and some children with simple ASDs or VSDs survive to adulthood and are able to enjoy normal, active lives. However, without treatment, children born with a large atrial septal defect or ventricular septal defect may face a greater risk of serious disabilities, ranging from mild to life-threatening, including congestive heart failure, stroke, pulmonary hypertension, arrhythmias and endocarditis.

Contact a Birth Defect Lawyer for Help

Approximately one in every 100 babies are born with congenital heart defects like atrial septal defects and ventricular septal defects, which occur because of incomplete or abnormal development of the baby’s heart during the first trimester of pregnancy. If you took Zofran during pregnancy, and your child was born with a hole in the heart malformation or another serious birth defect, contact a reputable birth defect attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. You may be entitled to compensation for your child’s injuries and medical expenses, which you can pursue by filing a product liability lawsuit against the maker of the pharmaceutical drug.

Hole in the heart birth defects // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Mesh Erosion

Transvaginal mesh implants are commonly used to treat pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI) in women, and while the mesh devices were originally thought to be strong and long-lasting, thousands of women across the country have reported serious complications from vaginal mesh, including instances where the mesh has eroded, breaking into small fragments that can puncture the vagina, bowels and bladder. If you received a transvaginal mesh implant for POP or SUI repair, and you have since experienced mesh erosion or another serious side effect, contact a knowledgeable transvaginal mesh injury lawyer as soon as possible to explore your possible compensation options.

Mesh Erosion Lawsuits // Ford & Associates Nationwide

What is Mesh Erosion?

Erosion is one of the most devastating complications of vaginal mesh surgery, occurring when the surgical mesh implant gradually erodes through the vaginal wall and sometimes into surrounding organs. Transvaginal mesh is a net-like device that is implanted through the vagina to support pelvic muscles that have been weakened due to multiple childbirths or hysterectomy surgery, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states on its website that “erosion of mesh slings through the vagina is the most commonly reported mesh-specific complication from SUI surgeries with mesh.” Some of the most common symptoms of transvaginal mesh erosion include:

  • Pain in the implant area
  • Bleeding
  • Leakage or pain during urination
  • Recurrent bladder infections
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Spasms or “poking” sensations in the pelvic area

Mesh Erosion Treatment and Complications

Symptoms of mesh erosion may occur within one month after the transvaginal mesh is implanted, and the condition can be diagnosed using an ultrasound, colonoscopy (a rectum and colon exam), cystography (a bladder exam), or blood, stool and urine tests. In instances of mesh erosion, surgery is typically required to remove all or part of the transvaginal mesh implant from the tissue that has grown in and around it. Removing surgical mesh can be complicated, however, and may require multiple surgeries where incisions are made through the vaginal wall to extract the device and repair any organs damaged by the mesh. Unfortunately, removal of the entire mesh device isn’t always possible, and some women have experienced lasting complications from transvaginal mesh, including chronic pain, weakened pelvic muscles, damage to the bladder and/or bowel, and recurrent POP or SUI.

Link Between Transvaginal Mesh and Erosion Injuries

In October 2008, the FDA issued a warning about the risk of complications from transvaginal mesh, based on more than 1,000 vaginal mesh adverse event reports submitted to the agency between 2005 and 2007. In July 2011, the FDA issued an updated warning identifying an additional 2,874 reports of adverse events associated with transvaginal mesh devices used to repair POP or SUI between 2008 and 2010. In its report, the FDA noted that the most frequent complications from vaginal mesh surgery included “mesh erosion through the vagina (also called exposure, extrusion or protrusion), pain, infection, bleeding, pain during sexual intercourse (dyspareunia), organ perforation and urinary problems.” The agency also reported at that time that “serious complications associated with surgical mesh for transvaginal repair of POP are not rare.”

An Experienced Transvaginal Mesh Attorney Can Help

A growing number of women throughout the United States are pursuing legal claims against the makers of transvaginal mesh devices, alleging that the companies knew or should have known about the risk of erosion complications from vaginal mesh, yet failed to provide adequate warnings about this risk. If you believe you have been adversely affected by transvaginal mesh erosion side effects, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries, medical bills, and pain and suffering. Consult an experienced product liability lawyer today to discuss the possibility of filing a claim against the maker of the allegedly defective transvaginal mesh device.

Mesh Erosion Attorney  // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Organ Perforation

Transvaginal mesh is commonly used to relieve the symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI) in women whose pelvic organs have begun to sag through weakened pelvic muscles, due to childbirth, hysterectomy or other reasons. Unfortunately, many women who receive transvaginal mesh implants are unaware of the potential for surgical mesh to cause devastating complications, like mesh erosion, infection and perforation of internal organs, due to defects in their design. If you received a transvaginal mesh implant for the treatment of POP or SUI, and you have since suffered organ perforation or another major side effect, consult an experienced product liability lawyer today to explore your possible compensation options.

Organ Perforation Lawsuit // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Organ Perforation Described

Transvaginal mesh is a net-like implant made from synthetic, non-absorbable materials like polyester, and inserted through the vaginal wall to treat POP and SUI in women. Synthetic mesh has been marketed as a strong and reliable medical device by mesh manufacturing companies, but research has shown that the implants may actually be prone to eroding, or breaking down, which can cause the mesh to move out of place and cause injury to nearby organs. Sharp fragments from eroded transvaginal mesh implants can perforate the vagina, bladder, urinary tract, blood vessels, rectum, colon or lower intestines, resulting in symptoms like:

  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloody stools
  • Pain when urinating
  • Severe pelvic cramping
  • Excessive vaginal bleeding
  • Generalized weakness
  • Pressure

Long-Term Effects of Organ Perforation Injuries

When vaginal mesh begins to erode, it may perforate nearby organs, resulting in complications like intense pain, bleeding and infection. Organ perforation is one of the most severe side effects linked to transvaginal mesh surgery, and it can be life-threatening in some cases. If left untreated, organ perforation complications from surgical mesh can lead to devastating complications, including fever, chills, elevated heart rate, sepsis (widespread infection), and possibly even death in some cases. In addition to organ perforation, side effects of transvaginal mesh may include vaginal scarring, vaginal shrinkage, nerve damage in the vaginal area, urinary tract infections, and the need for multiple corrective surgeries to remove all or part of the mesh implant and repair any damage to nearby organs.

Link Between Vaginal Mesh and Organ Perforation

Since transvaginal mesh was first approved for use in the United States under the FDA’s fast-track approval process, which allows medical devices to enter the market without clinical testing as long as they are similar to devices that have already been approved, serious concerns have been raised about the safety of the implants. In fact, by 2011, the FDA had received more than 4,000 reports of adverse events associated with vaginal mesh, including serious injuries and deaths from complications like mesh erosion, organ perforation and mesh infection. In July 2011, the FDA issued a safety communication indicating that complications from vaginal mesh are not rare, as was previously believed, and that using surgical mesh to repair POP or SUI may expose patients to unnecessary complications without any added benefits.

Contact a Transvaginal Mesh Lawyer for Help

Thousands of product liability lawsuits have been brought against the makers of transvaginal mesh devices in recent years, on behalf of women and family members who have been adversely affected by organ perforation and other alleged vaginal mesh complications. If you or a loved one has been harmed by side effects of a potentially defective transvaginal mesh implant, contact a knowledgeable vaginal mesh lawyer as soon as possible for legal help. You may have grounds to file a mesh lawsuit against the device manufacturing company, in order to pursue financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and emotional trauma.

Organ Perforation  // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Intracranial Bleeding/Brain Hemorrhage

Intracranial bleeding is a medical emergency that can result in the death of brain cells due to increased intracranial pressure, and patients with a brain hemorrhage may suffer coma or death without proper treatment. Although some individuals suffer brain hemorrhages due to brain tumors, head trauma or high blood pressure, use of the popular blood thinner medication Xarelto has also been linked to an increased risk of uncontrollable intracranial bleeding in patients. If you took Xarelto in the past, and you have since suffered intracranial bleeding or a severe cerebral hemorrhage, contact a knowledgeable product liability lawyer for legal help. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries, which you can pursue by filing a lawsuit against the maker of the pharmaceutical drug.

Internal Bleeding Lawsuit // Ford & Associates Nationwide

What is a Brain Hemorrhage?

Intracranial bleeding, also known as a brain hemorrhage or cerebral hemorrhage, is a type of stroke that occurs when a ruptured blood vessel causes bleeding in or around the brain. When bleeding occurs inside the brain, it can cause swelling that can increase pressure on the tissue surrounding the brain, reduce blood flow to this tissue and subsequently kill brain cells.

Symptoms of Intracranial Bleeding

Depending on the circumstances surrounding a cerebral hemorrhage, bleeding can occur inside the brain, between the brain and the membranes that cover it, between the skull and the covering of the brain, or between the layers of the brain’s covering. The symptoms associated with bleeding on the brain depends on the severity of the bleeding and the location of the bleeding, and may include the following:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Weakness in an arm or leg
  • A sudden severe headache
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Lethargy
  • Seizures with no previous history of seizures
  • Loss of balance or coordination
  • Difficulty writing or reading
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Loss of fine motor skills

Common Causes of Brain Hemorrhages

Cerebral hemorrhages account for approximately 13% of strokes, and can be caused by any number of factors, including head trauma, blood vessel abnormalities, high blood pressure, aneurysm, liver disease, brain tumors, blood or bleeding disorders, or a condition called amyloid angiopathy. In some cases, patients at risk for blood clots and stroke who take certain anticoagulant medications, like Xarelto, may face an increased risk of brain hemorrhages or intracranial bleeding that cannot be effectively controlled by doctors. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s adverse event reporting system, Xarelto was identified as the suspected cause of serious bleeding side effects in 2,081 reports in 2012 alone, including at least 151 deaths.

Long-Term Effects of Intracranial Bleeding

The prognosis for patients with intracranial bleeding depends on the size of the brain hemorrhage and the amount of swelling, and some patients with bleeding on the brain may recover completely. However, some individuals with a cerebral hemorrhage may suffer devastating complications from the condition, including stroke, loss of brain function, and possibly even death. For patients taking Xarelto, the risk of severe intracranial bleeding is exceptionally high, due to the fact that the anticoagulant drug does not have an approved antidote. This means that doctors are unable to reverse the blood-thinning effects of the medication in the event of a brain hemorrhage or another serious bleeding event, increasing the risk of death or permanent injury.

A Qualified Attorney Can Help

Serious concerns have been raised recently about the safety of Xarelto, and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) has reported that the rate of uncontrollable bleeding and other side effects allegedly linked to Xarelto treatment is “steadily increasing,” as more and more patients are prescribed the anticoagulant drug. If you believe you have been adversely affected by alleged Xarelto inctracranial bleeding complications, consult an experienced brain hemorrhage attorney to discuss your options for legal recourse. With a qualified product liability lawyer on your side, you can protect your legal rights and seek fair and timely reimbursement for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.

Blood thinner Xarelto internal bleeding // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Internal Bleeding

Internal bleeding is a medical emergency that can lead to cardiac arrest and death without prompt treatment, and some new-generation blood thinner medications, like Xarelto, have been tied to a potential increased risk of uncontrollable bleeding complications in users. If you took the anticoagulant Xarelto to reduce your risk of stroke and blood clots, and you have since suffered uncontrollable bleeding complications like brain hemorrhage, hemorrhagic stroke or gastrointestinal bleeding, contact a knowledgeable product liability lawyer today for legal help. With a qualified Xarelto attorney on your side, you can ensure that your legal rights are protected and pursue the financial compensation you deserve for your injuries, medical bills, and pain and suffering.

Internal Bleeding Lawsuits // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Types of Internal Bleeding

Internal bleeding is characterized by a loss of blood that occurs from the vascular system into the body cavity, affecting the brain, stomach, lungs, gastrointestinal tract, and other organs or tissues. Internal bleeding occurs when damage to a vein or artery allows blood to escape the circulatory system, and the amount of bleeding depends on the extent of damage to an organ and the blood vessels that supply it, as well as the body’s ability to repair the breaks in the blood vessel walls. When the body’s ability to repair these breaks is impaired, internal bleeding can have serious and possibly even deadly consequences. Some of the most common types of internal bleeding include:

  • Brain hemorrhage
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding
  • Hemorrhagic stroke

Common Causes of Internal Bleeding

There are a number of possible causes of internal bleeding, including blunt force trauma, occurring in a motor vehicle accident for example, or penetrating trauma, such as a stab or bullet wound. In some cases however, internal bleeding may be related to the use of certain medications, namely blood thinner drugs like Xarelto (rivaroxaban). Internal bleeding is a known side effect of all blood thinner medications, and research has shown that patients who take anticoagulant drugs may experience severe bleeding complications even with minor injury or illness. However, because there is no approved antidote that can reverse the blood-thinning effects of Xarelto in the case of a serious bleeding event, the drug has been linked to a higher rate of uncontrollable bleeding than other anticoagulant medications.

Internal Bleeding Treatment and Complications

Internal bleeding can be difficult to identify, since it cannot be seen on the outside of the body, and in cases of bleeding associated with anticoagulant medications like Xarelto, the risk of complications is much more serious, due to the intended effect of the medication on the blood’s ability to clot. In patients who suffer internal bleeding side effects of Xarelto, which cannot be easily controlled due to the lack of an approved reversal agent, complications may include:

  • Loss of circulating red blood cells
  • Impaired oxygen delivery to cells in the body
  • Organ failure
  • Shock
  • Coma
  • Death

Contact a Skilled Product Liability Lawyer Today

As more and more patients are switched over to newer-generation blood thinners like Xarelto, the number of internal bleeding side effects associated with the prescription medications continues to rise. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Xarelto was identified as the suspected cause of serious bleeding complications in more than 2,000 adverse event reports submitted in 2012 alone, including at least 151 patient deaths, and this potentially deadly internal bleeding risk has led a number of former Xarelto users to pursue legal claims against the maker of the anticoagulant drug. If you believe you have been harmed by internal bleeding side effects of Xarelto or another pharmaceutical medication, consult an experienced drug injury attorney today to explore your possible compensation options.

Blood thinner Xarelto risks internal bleeding. // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Kidney Failure

Kidney failure is a serious medical condition that can lead to devastating and potentially life-threatening complications, such as permanent kidney damage and death, and kidney failure side effects have been linked to the use of a popular class of Type 2 diabetes drugs called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors, which includes the prescription medication Invokana (canagliflozin). If you took Invokana to treat your Type 2 diabetes, and you have since been diagnosed with acute kidney failure, kidney damage or severe kidney impairment, contact an experienced kidney failure lawyer today for legal help. You may have grounds to file a product liability lawsuit against the maker of the diabetes medication, in order to pursue financial compensation for your injuries and medical expenses.

Invokana Kidney Failure Lawsuit // Ford & Associates Nationwide

What is Kidney Failure?

Kidney failure, also known as renal failure, occurs which the kidneys lose the ability to balance fluids and remove waste from the body. There are two types of kidney failure, acute renal failure, which occurs suddenly and without warning, and chronic kidney disease, which occurs following longstanding disease of the kidneys. Because SGLT2 inhibitor diabetes medications like Invokana act on the kidneys to help remove glucose from the body, the prescription drugs are contraindicated for individuals with severe kidney impairment, and may be associated with kidney damage or kidney failure complications in otherwise healthy patients with Type 2 diabetes.

Kidney Failure Causes and Symptoms

There are a number of possible causes of kidney failure, including impaired blood flow to the kidneys, damage to the kidneys, and urine blockage in the kidneys, but a growing body of research has established a potential connection between kidney failure and side effects of the SGLT2 inhibitor class of diabetes drugs. One of a number of possible side effects of Invokana and other SGLT2 inhibitors is dehydration, and when the body becomes dehydrated, the kidneys are unable to function properly and may begin to fail. When the kidneys are no longer able to perform their proper function, dangerous levels of wastes may begin to accumulate in the body, and the chemical makeup of the blood may become out of balance, resulting in kidney failure. The most common symptoms of kidney failure include:

  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Decrease urine output
  • Fluid retention
  • Drowsiness
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Seizures
  • Shortness of breath

Long-Term Effects of Kidney Failure

In patients with acute kidney failure, which develops rapidly over the course of a few hours or days, the condition can be fatal and requires intensive treatment to reverse the effects of the renal failure. Treatment for kidney failure typically requires hospitalization, during which doctors are tasked with identifying and addressing the underlying cause of the renal failure, which may include use of the diabetes drug Invokana. In kidney failure patients who are otherwise healthy, it may be possible to recover normal or nearly normal kidney function. However, in some cases of renal failure related to the SGLT2 inhibitor Invokana, the buildup of potassium in the bloodstream caused by the kidneys’ inability to function properly may lead to severe complications like permanent kidney damage, abnormal heart rhythms and even death.

Link Between Invokana and Kidney Failure

In May 2015, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a drug safety communication, warning consumers and the medical community that “the type 2 diabetes medicines canagliflozin [Invokana], dapagliflozin [Farxiga] and empagliflozin [Jardiance] may lead to ketoacidosis, a serious condition where the body produces high levels of blood acids called ketones that may require hospitalization.” The FDA also noted in the same warning, that “In addition to ketoacidosis, other possible side effects of SGLT2 inhibitors include dehydration, kidney problems [and] low blood sugar when this class of medicines is combined with other prescription medicines used to treat diabetes, increased cholesterol in the blood, and yeast infections.”

A Reputable Kidney Failure Attorney Can Help

Type 2 diabetes accounts for more than 90% of diabetes cases in the United States, and Invokana is fast becoming one of the most widely-used methods for treating the lifelong disease. Unfortunately, according to mounting research, Type 2 diabetes patients who take Invokana or another SGLT2 inhibitor medication may face an increased risk of kidney failure and other serious complications, which may become life-threatening without the proper treatment. If you believe you have been adversely affected by kidney failure side effects of Invokana, consult a reputable product liability lawyer to discuss your legal options. With a knowledgeable Invokana attorney on your side, you can protect your legal rights and seek fair and timely reimbursement for your losses.

Invokana linked to kidney failure // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Deep Vein Thrombosis

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a serious medical condition that may lead to potentially life-threatening health consequences in patients, including pulmonary embolism, and studies have shown that DVT side effects may be related to the use of certain controversial medical devices, including inferior vena cava (IVC) filters. If you received a blood clot filter in the past, and you have since suffered deep vein thrombosis complications, contact a reputable product liability lawyer to discuss your legal options. You may have grounds to file a claim against the maker of the IVC filter, in order to pursue the financial compensation you deserve for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.

Deep Vein Thrombosis Lawsuit // Ford & Associates

Deep Vein Thrombosis Described

Deep vein thrombosis occurs when a blood clot develops in one or more of the deep veins, usually in the legs, causing leg pain or swelling. Deep vein thrombosis may occur without any symptoms, but most people suffering from DVT exhibit symptoms like:

  • Pain in the affected leg that feels like soreness or cramping
  • Swelling in the affected leg
  • Redness
  • Warmness
  • Engorged superficial veins

Common Causes of DVT

Deep vein thrombosis may occur in individuals who have certain medical conditions that affect how their blood clots, and may also affect individuals who are unable to move for long periods of time, including those who have undergone surgery, been involved in an accident, or are confined to a nursing home or hospital bed. More recently, it has been discovered that deep vein thrombosis side effects may be related to the use of inferior vena cava (IVC) filters in patients at risk for blood clots. The filters are implanted in the inferior vena cava, a large vein that carries deoxygenated blood back to the heart, and are designed to prevent blood clots that break free from the deep veins in the legs from traveling to the lungs and causing a pulmonary embolism. However, research has shown that deep vein thrombosis may actually be a side effect of IVC filter use.

DVT Treatment and Complications

Deep vein thrombosis can sometimes be treated with prescription medications or certain medical devices designed to prevent the blood from clotting or blood clots from breaking loose and lodging in the lungs. The real danger associated with deep vein thrombosis is that the blood clots in the veins may break free and embolize, or travel through the bloodstream to the heart or lungs, blocking blood flow and causing serious complications, like pulmonary embolism. The most common warning signs of pulmonary embolism include rapid pulse, chest pain or discomfort, unexplained sudden onset of shortness of breath, feeling dizzy or lightheaded, and coughing up blood. Together, DVT and pulmonary embolism make up a single disease process known as venous thromboembolism.

Link Between IVC Filters and DVT

According to one randomized controlled trial completed on IVC filters, the devices reduced the incidence of pulmonary embolism but increased the incidence of deep vein thrombosis, and in 2012, the American College of Chest Physicians recommended the use of IVC filters for patients who are unable to use anticoagulant medications and who have either acute pulmonary embolism or acute proximal (above the knee) deep vein thrombosis. In August 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) identified more than 900 adverse event reports submitted to the agency in connection with IVC filters, including “lower limb deep vein thrombosis (DVT), filter fracture, filter migration, filter embolization and IVC perforation,” and in 2014, the FDA issued another warning recommending that IVC filters be removed within 29-54 days after implantation, to reduce the risk of DVT and other complications.

An Experienced Product Liability Lawyer Can Help

The makers of inferior vena cava filters, like C.R. Bard’s G2 filter and Cook Medical’s Celect and Gunther Tulip filter, are facing a growing number of product liability lawsuits filed on behalf of patients who received a blood clot filter and subsequently suffered deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism and other potentially deadly complications. If you have been diagnosed with DVT, and you believe an IVC filter side effect to be the cause, consult an experienced attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options for legal recourse. With a knowledgeable product liability lawyer on your side, you can ensure that your legal rights are protected, and pursue the financial compensation you deserve for your losses.

Deep Vein Thrombosis Legal Services // Ford & Associates Nationwide

Deep Joint Infection

Deep joint infections can lead to devastating and possibly even deadly consequences for affected individuals and their families, and attorneys across the country are calling for patients who received a knee or hip replacement and were later diagnosed with a deep joint infection to consider filing a claim for financial compensation. In many cases reported by patients or their loved ones, deep joint infections have been associated with the use of certain forced-air warming devices, like the Bair Hugger blanket, which are designed to keep patients warm during surgery, but may actually expose them to bacterial contamination. If you believe you have been harmed by side effects of the Bair Hugger blanket or another potentially dangerous medical device, contact an experienced product liability lawyer today for qualified legal help.

Bair Hugger Lawsuits // Drug-Lawsuits.com

What is a Deep Joint Infection?

A deep joint infection is a bacterial infection of a joint, most commonly the knee or hip, and can affect both natural and artificial joints, i.e. following an artificial knee or hip replacement procedure. Deep joint infections can develop in the wound itself or deep around the artificial knee or hip implant, and may occur during the patient’s hospital stay or after he or she returns home, sometimes even weeks or years later. Some of the most common symptoms of a deep joint infection include the following:

  • Swelling
  • Increased pain or stiffness in a previously well-functioning joint
  • Wound drainage
  • Warmth and redness around the wound
  • Fever, chills and night sweats
  • Fatigue

Common Causes of Deep Joint Infections

Infections are caused by bacteria, and any infection in the body can spread to a knee or hip joint replacement following surgery. Although the immune system can effectively defeat most infection-causing bacteria, bacteria that gains access to an artificial implant may multiply and cause an infection before the body has a chance to respond. A common cause of deep joint infections that has garnered more and more attention recently is the Bair Hugger patient-warming blanket, which may cause bacterial contamination of the surgical site during knee and hip replacement surgeries.

Deep Joint Infection Treatment and Prognosis

Treatment for a deep joint infection may include nonsurgical methods, like intravenous or oral antibiotics, or surgical methods, which are typically required when the infection has gained deep access to the artificial implant. With early diagnosis and treatment, the chances of the infected implant being retained improves, but even with antibiotics and preventative treatments, some patients who develop a deep joint infection in or around an artificial knee or hip replacement require surgery to clean the infected wound, kill the infection and replace the implant.

In general, the longer a deep joint infection has been present, the more difficult it is to treat without removing the artificial joint. Infections that occurs months to years after the joint replacement surgery, and those that have been present for longer periods of time, almost always require a staged surgery, which involves removing the implant, cleaning out the joints and soft tissues, placing an antibiotic spacer to maintain normal joint space and alignment, and administering intravenous antibiotics.

Patients who undergo staged surgery for a deep joint infection typically require at least six weeks of IV antibiotics before they are ready for revision surgery to receive a new artificial joint. During revision surgery, the doctor will remove the antibiotic spacer, clean the joint again, and implant a new total knee or hip replacement device. In some cases of deep joint infections allegedly caused by bacteria being spread during surgery where the Bair Hugger blanket was used, patients have died or had to have the affected limb amputated.

Contact a Product Liability Lawyer for Help

According to numerous studies published in recent years, forced-air warming devices like Bair Hugger significantly increase the number of airborne particles over a surgical wound, and a growing number of patients diagnosed with deep joint infections are now pursuing legal claims against the makers of the Bair Hugger blanket, alleging that the companies knew about the potential for the forced-air warming device to cause deep joint infections in patients, yet failed to provide adequate warnings about this risk. If you underwent surgery where the Bair Hugger blanket was used, and you have since suffered a deep joint infection, sepsis, MRSA or the need for amputation, consult a reputable deep joint infection attorney to explore your possible compensation options.

Deep Joint Infection Lawsuits

Ventricular Septal Defect

When the development of an unborn baby is interrupted in utero by an outside factor, such as maternal use of a potentially dangerous pharmaceutical drug, the result may be a debilitating heart birth defect called a ventricular septal defect. Ventricular septal defects affect the formation of the heart during the early stages of pregnancy, and without treatment, the deformity can cause serious problems for the affected individual, during childhood or later in life. If your child was born with a “hole in the heart” birth defect like a ventricular septal defect, and you believe a pharmaceutical drug to be the cause, contact a knowledgeable birth defect lawyer today for legal help. You may have grounds to file a product liability lawsuit against the drug manufacturing company, in order to seek fair and timely reimbursement for your losses.

Ventricular Septal Defect Lawsuit // Ford & Associates

What is a Ventricular Septal Defect?

A ventricular septal defect (VSD) is a “hole in the heart” birth defect that is present at birth, and occurs when there is a hole in the wall that separates the lower chambers of the heart, allowing blood to pass from the left to the right side of the heart. As a result of the malformation, oxygen-rich blood then gets pumped back to the lungs rather than out to the rest of the body, which forces the heart to work harder to keep the tissues oxygenated and the organs working properly. Some common symptoms of a ventricular septal defect in babies include the following:

  • Fast breathing or breathlessness
  • Poor eating
  • Failure to thrive
  • Easy tiring
  • Failure to gain weight
  • Heart murmur

What Causes “Hole in the Heart” Birth Defects?

There is often no clear cause of a ventricular septal defect, but the congenital malformation arises from problems occurring early in the development of the heart, while the unborn baby is in the mother’s womb. A ventricular septal defect occurs during fetal development, when the muscular wall separating the left and right sides of the heart, or the septum, fails to form properly between the lower chambers of the heart, or the ventricles. There are several factors that may increase a baby’s risk of developing a ventricular septal defect during pregnancy, including the use of certain pharmaceutical drugs by expectant mothers. The following are some widely-used medications that research shows may make a baby more likely to suffer a ventricular septal defect, when taken during pregnancy:

  • Zofran (ondansetron) – An anti-nausea drug intended to treat cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy that is sometimes prescribed off-label to pregnant women experiencing severe morning sickness.
  • SSRI antidepressants – A powerful class of prescription medications commonly used to treat depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and other mood disorders.
  • Depakote (valproate) – A widely-used anticonvulsant drug commonly prescribed to treat epilepsy and prevent chronic migraine headaches in pregnant women.

Complications of Heart Birth Defects

A small ventricular septal defect may cause no problems for the affected individual, and some VSDs may even close on their own, without the need for intervention. However, larger VSDs can cause a wide range of disabilities, and typically require surgery early in life to prevent serious complications like pulmonary hypertension, endocarditis and other heart problems, such as abnormal heart rhythms and valve problems. Closing a large ventricular septal defect by open-heart surgery is usually done in infancy or childhood, even in patients with minor symptoms, to prevent potentially life-threatening complications later in life.

Contact a Knowledgeable Birth Defect Lawyer Today

According to the National Institutes of Health, ventricular septal defects are one of the most common congenital heart malformations, affecting between 30% and 60% of all newborns with a heart birth defect, or between two and six children per 1,000 births. However, when expectant mothers take certain pharmaceutical drugs while pregnant, the risk of ventricular septal defects and other heart birth defects may increase significantly. If you used a powerful medication like Depakote or Zofran during pregnancy, and your child has suffered a ventricular septal defect or another major congenital malformation, consult an experienced birth defect attorney to explore your possible compensation options. With a knowledgeable lawyer on your side, you can protect your legal rights and pursue the compensation your child deserves for his or her injuries.

Ventricular Septal Defect (a congenital heart defect) may be linked to infant exposure to Zofran, Depakote, or SSRI antidepressants (like Paxil or Zoloft) during pregnancy. // Ford & Associates

Atrial Septal Defect

An atrial septal defect is a major congenital malformation that affects the formation of a baby’s heart during fetal development, and may be more likely to occur in unborn babies exposed to certain pharmaceutical drugs in utero. If your baby was born with an atrial septal defect or another serious heart birth defect, and you believe a defective prescription or over-the-counter medication to be the cause, contact an experienced product liability lawyer today for legal help. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your child’s injuries, past and future medical expenses, and pain and suffering, which you can pursue by filing a birth defect lawsuit against the drug manufacturing company.

Atrial Septal Defect Lawsuit // Ford & Associates

Atrial Septal Defect Described

An atrial septal defect (ASD) is a “hole in the heart” birth defect characterized by a hole in the wall separating the two upper chambers of the heart, called atria. The malformation is congenital, or present from birth, and allows freshly oxygenated blood from the left atrium to mix with deoxygenated blood in the right atrium, or vice versa, which can result in decreased oxygen levels in the blood that supplies the brain, organs and tissues. Some of the most common symptoms of an atrial septal defect include:

  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath, especially when exercising
  • Frequent lung infections
  • Swelling of the abdomen, feet or legs
  • Heart palpitations or skipped beats
  • Stroke
  • Heart murmur

Possible Causes of Atrial Septal Defects

It is common knowledge that atrial septal defects present at birth are caused by problems occurring early in the heart’s development while the child is still in the womb. And, while there is often no clear cause of “hole in the heart” birth defects, a growing body of research has shown that the use of certain pharmaceutical drugs during pregnancy may increase an unborn baby’s risk of suffering severe birth defects, including atrial septal defects and ventricular septal defects. Some of the more popular prescription drugs that have been linked to an alleged increased risk of atrial septal defects in babies include the following:

  • Zofran (ondansetron) – A powerful anti-nausea medication sometimes prescribed to pregnant women struggling with severe morning sickness.
  • Depakote (valproate) – A popular anti-epileptic drug commonly used to treat epileptic seizures, migraine headaches and bipolar disorder.
  • Paxil (paroxetine) – An SSRI antidepressant drug used to treat depression, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other psychiatric disorders.
  • Zoloft (sertraline) – An SSRI antidepressant prescribed to treat major depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other mood disorders.

Long-Term Effects of Hole in the Heart Birth Defects

Small atrial septal defects may cause no symptoms for affected individuals, and some may even close on their own during infancy or early childhood. However, large ASDs can cause damage to the heart and lungs, and may require surgery to prevent complications caused by the hole in the heart. In some cases, adults with an undetected atrial septal defect may have a shorter life span from problems like heart failure or pulmonary hypertension, high blood pressure that affects the arteries in the lungs. If the atrial septal defect is large, the extra blood volume caused by the heart pumping oxygen-rich blood to the lungs may overfill the lungs and overwork the heart, causing serious and potentially life-threatening complications, like right-sided heart failure, heart rhythm abnormalities and stroke.

Contact an Experienced Birth Defect Attorney

Like ventricular septal defects, atrial septal defects are relatively common birth defects, present in one child per 1,500 births, and the malformation actually makes up 30% to 40% of all congenital heart diseases that are seen in adults. If you took a prescription drug like Zofran, Depakote or Paxil during pregnancy, and your child was born with an atrial septal defect or another serious congenital heart malformation, consult a reputable birth defect attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. With an experienced product liability lawyer on your side, you can ensure that your legal rights are protected, and seek fair and timely reimbursement for your child’s birth defect and any related medical expenses.

Atrial Septal Defect (a congenital heart defect) may be linked to infant exposure to Zofran, Depakote, or SSRI antidepressants (like Paxil or Zoloft) during pregnancy. // Ford & Associates