IVC (Inferior Vena Cava) filters are an alternative method of dealing with blood clots for people unable or unwilling to use blood thinners. There are a variety of reasons blood thinners may not be appropriate for a given patient, including bleedings disorders. When these issues are identified, an IVC filter may be used instead.
The primary purpose of an IVC filter is to prevent blood clots from traveling to a lung, resulting in a pulmonary embolism or other significant health issue. When these events occur, they are often fatal. But in some cases, use of an IVC filter is riskier than no treatment at all, dependent on the size and placement of identified blood clots.
One of the major risks of IVC filters is that parts of the filter can break away and eventually perforate an internal organ. When this occurs, dependent upon the degree of perforation and the organ affected, a person may not even know a problem has occurred until their life is at risk.
Internal bleeding is always a major problem, and often requires emergency surgery to correct, but some organs are more prone to bleeding than others. The lungs and heart are particularly problematic if punctured, as are large blood vessels near the heart. If the IVC filter shards cause internal bleeding in any of these areas, emergency intervention is an absolute must.
If you received an Inferior Vena Cava filter and suffered side effects up to and including partial breakage, please consider reaching out to an experienced attorney. So long as companies continue to profit off of dangerous devices, they will continue to market them aggressively, ignoring the damage done by their products to hundreds and even thousands of patients.