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Of Counsel, Drucker | Hopkins, LLP

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Inferior Vena Cava (“IVC”) Filters

 

 Has someone you know had an IVC filter put in them?  If so, they may need to seek immediate assistance.  Here’s some background on why and how we can help:

 

What is an IVC filter?

An IVC filter is a device that is implanted to help stop blood clots from hitting the lungs.

“IVC” stands for “inferior vena cava,” which is a large vein in the middle of the abdomen.  This is the main vein used by the body to carry blood up from the legs (where a lot of blood clotting can occur) towards the heart.

The “filter” is what it sounds like—a little cone with a “cage” that allows the blood to flow around the trapped clot (technically, “embolisms”) before they make their way to the heart and the lungs.

 

What kind of doctor implants IVC filters?

All kinds of surgeons can implant IVC filters.  If you’ve seen any doctors practicing in any of these areas, they may have implanted IVC filters:

• Interventional cardiology,

• Vascular surgery,

• Trauma care and trauma surgery,

• Bariatric surgery, and

• Orthopedic surgery.

 

Why would a doctor implant an IVC filter?

If the patient is at risk for having blood clots in the heart and lungs (“pulmonary embolisms”) or deep vein thrombosis (“DVT”), then the patient may often be treated with blood thinners (“anticoagulants”).  But if the blood thinners cannot be used, or if they’re ineffective in treating DVT, then the IVC filter may be your best option.

 

How long are IVC filters supposed to stay in the body?

Originally, they were supposed to be put in the body forever.

 

So what’s wrong with keeping the IVC filter in my body forever?

The problem is that IVC filters tend to break down as time goes on.  Among other things, the FDA has been told that problems include:

• Device migration—the filter moves away from where it was placed.

• Filter fracture—the filter starts breaking apart.  Some studies suggest that fractures may occur 25%-40% of the time, within four years of implant.

• Embolization—the filter or its fragments clot the heart or lungs.

• Perforation—the filter harms the vessel wall.  Some studies indicate that this may occur more than 50% of the time for some IVC filters.

• Difficulty removing the device.

 

One of the most frightening aspects of this is that some studies show that some filters can cause damage to your body before symptoms occur.  In other words, your IVC filter may be harming you without you’re noticing.

 

What should I do?

Consult with your primary care physician and/or the surgeon who implanted the IVC filter in you.  The FDA recommends that for those with retrievable IVC filters, your doctors should “consider removing the filter as soon as protection from pulmonary embolism is no longer needed.”  In other words, as soon as the risks of the filter outweigh the risks of the blood clots (perhaps around 60 days after surgery), you should have a thorough evaluation for another surgery.

 

How do you all help?

 We provide guidance and support to you in finding out all you can know about your filter.  Then, at absolutely no cost or risk to you, we’ll help you evaluate whether or not you may have a legal claim against the IVC filter manufacturer—especially if they knew what they were doing was dangerous.  Those companies may be liable to pay for the injuries you have, including missed work and hospital bills.  Please give us a call today to see how we can help: 713.352.8888.

 

 

 

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WILL DENHAM

Of Counsel, Drucker | Hopkins, LLP

 

1401 Richmond Avenue Suite 250 | Houston, TX 77006

Phone: 713-352-8888 | Fax: 713-454-7773 | Map & Directions

 

Learn How Our Team Can Help You. Call 713-352-8888 For a Consultation.

Will Denham - Of Counsel, Drucker | Hopkins, LLP serves the Houston, Texas, metro area, Harris County and the surrounding areas.

 

© 2017 by WillDenham.com All rights reserved. Disclaimer

Site by Sara Yonker Creative Services

 

WILL DENHAM

Of Counsel, Drucker | Hopkins, LLP

Call us today 713-352-8888

Learn if we're the lawyers for you during a free consultation

Let's fix this.

Submitting Form...

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Message received.

WILL DENHAM

Of Counsel, Drucker | Hopkins, LLP

Will Denham Of Counsel, Drucker | Hopkins, LLP

1401 Richmond Avenue Suite 250 | Houston, TX 77006

Phone: 713-352-8888 | Fax: 713-454-7773 | Map & Directions

 

Learn How Our Team Can Help You. Call 713-352-8888 For A Consultation.

Will Denham of Counsel, Drucker Hopkins, LLP serves the Houston, Texas, metro area, Harris County and the surrounding areas.

 

© 2017 by WillDenham.com. All rights reserved. Disclaimer

Site by Sara Yonker Creative Services