Bard IVC Filters

What is an IVC Filter?

An inferior vena cava filter (also called an IVC filter) is a medical device that is implanted by surgeons into the inferior vena cava to prevent fatal pulmonary emboli (PEs).  Blood clots that develop in the veins of the leg or pelvis, a condition called deep vein thrombosis (DVT), occasionally break up and large pieces of the clot can travel to the lungs.  An IVC filter traps large clot fragments and prevents them from traveling through the vena cava vein to the heart and lungs, where they could cause severe complications or even death.  IVC filters can either be inserted through the femeral vein or jugular/subclavian vein.

Why Did the FDA Warn Against IVC Filter Usage?

The FDA has received roughly one thousand adverse reports involving IVC filters, specifically, that the filters fragment and migrate within the body, some times causing serious injury.

In August of 2010, the FDA urged physicians who advise their patients to use an IVC filter to consider the risk and benefits for individual patients, instead of simply choosing an IVC for all patients who are ineligible for anticoagulation therapy.  In addition, the FDA urges physicians to remove the IVC filters once the symptoms have gone away.

IVC filter complications are very serious and can be life threatening.  Out of the 921 reported adverse events to the FDA, there were:

  • 328 device migrations
  • 146 involved embolizations or detachment of the device components
  • 70 IVC perforations
  • 56 IVC filter fractures

In addition to the FDA warnings, a November 8, 2010 study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine has received a lot of interest.  This study was conducted by William Nicholson, M.D., and various researchers from York Hospital in Pennsylvania.  The study looked at the rate of IVC filter complications in patients who had received one of two types of IVC filters made by C.R. Bard (part of Johnson & Johnson):  the Bard Recovery, and the Bard G2.  In short, the study concluded that the Bard Recovery and Bard G2 filters had a high rate of fracture and migration, which could be potentially life-threatening.

Do you have a BARD FILTER?

If you have been implanted with either the Bard Recovery filter or the Bard G2 filter, please call our IVC filter lawyers immediately to discuss a potential IVC filter lawsuit, and allow us to determine if you may be entitled to compensation current situation.