TIVAD Lawsuit

TIVAD - What Are They?

Alternately known as port-a-caths, Totally Implantable Venous Access Devices (TIVADs) are medical devices that automatically administer treatments to patients. These devices are implanted under the skin to deliver medication directly to the veins of the patient.

While they have proved quite effective for treating certain conditions, they have also increasingly been shown to pose a risk. When a TIVAD malfunctions, it may leak medicine into the body at an uncontrolled rate. This can cause complications like infection and has resulted in the death of some unfortunate patients.

TIVAD Port Complications

TIVAD complications have already led to multiple lawsuits. These suits claim that TIVAD leakage has resulted in injuries such as:

  • Internal bleeding
  • Constant severe pain
  • Symptoms consistent with a heart attack
  • Tissue and organ perforations
  • Necrosis
  • Infection and sepsis
  • Pressure around the heart
  • Death

Additionally, most of these complications require surgery to correct. And any unnecessary surgery can result in long-term harm or death.

If you or a loved one has suffered harm from a leaking TIVAD, contact the attorneys at Ratzan Weissman & Boldt. We handle TIVAD lawsuits nationwide.

Why TIVAD Ports Are Leaking

There are several brands of TIVADs used in the United States. While multiple brands are prone to leakage, not all of them leak for the same reason. Some common defects are leading to leaks, though.

Vortex Devices Break Down

The popular Vortex Port has a design flaw due to the materials it is made of. This port is partially made of silicone mixed with barium sulfate. Unfortunately, this combination of materials results in the silicone breaking down over time. And that leads to medication leaking from the device.

Defective Locking Mechanisms

The locking mechanism in these devices is supposed to control the speed at which it administers drugs to the patients. Unfortunately, some of these devices include a design flaw allowing the medication to leak into the body uncontrolled. This is dangerous with any type of drug, especially when these devices are used for chemotherapy.

Cracking and Breaking

Another common design flaw is even more concerning. Some devices fracture after being implanted in the patient. This also results in uncontrolled leaking.

Additionally, these fractures can cause another type of harm. Pieces of the device can travel freely through the body, causing damage to any organs they contact. If these broken pieces reach the lungs or heart, there is a good chance they will result in the patient’s death.

Removal of Devices

An additional flaw has become the centerpiece of some lawsuits. Most of these devices were not designed to be easily removed. Typically, even if a device isn’t malfunctioning, it requires invasive surgery to be removed.

This is magnifying the harm caused by these malfunctioning devices because there is no easy way to stop the harm once a device fails. And the surgery required to remove these devices may end up being as dangerous as the failed TIVAD.

However, despite the difficulty of removing these devices, that is currently the only way to prevent additional harm. If you or a loved one has a defective TIVAD, contact your physician immediately to schedule surgery to get the device removed as soon as

FDA Recalls

While lawsuits involving TIVAD ports are relatively recent, these devices have been known to be dangerous for decades. The FDA first instituted a recall for a port-a-cath back in 2004. Several more have been recalled during the intervening decades.

Cook Medical Recall

One of the largest and most recent recalls was a 2017 recall of 31,000 Vital-Port Vascular Access Systems by Cook Medical. According to the recall notice, the device could release silicone pieces into the patient’s bloodstream, both directly harming the patient and preventing adequate delivery of medication.

TIVAD Lawsuits Due to Recalled Devices

Just because a device has been recalled doesn’t necessarily mean that a doctor respects that recall. If a doctor installed a recalled device in you or failed to advise you that your device was recalled after it was installed, you should speak to an attorney immediately to file a TIVAD lawsuit against them.

Past TIVAD Lawsuits

At this time, multiple lawsuits have been filed against manufacturers, doctors, and hospitals for TIVAD ports installed in patients. These personal injury lawsuits have been brought in several states for many different reasons.

For example, the family of Jesus L. III filed a lawsuit against Texas Children’s Hospital due to his death after having an AngioDynamics Vortex Port implanted in him in 2019. The device malfunctioned within weeks, resulting in broken pieces migrating through his body and chemotherapy chemicals leaking.

How to Join a TIVAD Lawsuit

The best way to join a TIVAD lawsuit is to consult with a personal injury lawyer who handles TIVAD cases, like those at Ratzan Weissman & Boldt. Depending on the details of your case, you may be eligible to file a lawsuit against your doctor, the hospital, the manufacturer of the product, or all of them.

Typically, you are better off filing an independent lawsuit than you are joining any class action lawsuits. Experienced attorneys will help you recover compensation for medical costs, lost wages, expenses, and wrongful deaths resulting from a defective TIVAD.

Expected Settlements or Payouts in a TIVAD Lawsuit

At this point, the full extent of the harm caused by defective TIVAD ports is unknown. There hasn’t been enough time to identify all of the complications that arise from leaking TAVIDs.

However, as a rule of thumb, medical cases have a very high maximum payout, particularly if they result in lifelong impairment or complications. Internal damage is difficult to treat and can easily require decades of treatment while preventing patients from working.

If you or a family member has been harmed by a leaking TAVID (including death), you are could be eligible for at least tens of thousands of dollars-some verdicts will likely end up north of $1 million.

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One of the things that most impacted me in working with the law firm of Stuart Ratzan was his empathy with my case. I know that as lawyers, they have to understand our case, but it was something very special because they lived through that stage of mine, that process and they were very respectful to me in that stage of pain and everything I was living through, and I could see his human side as a lawyer and as a law firm that they are. RWB Client
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