Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.

Defective defibrillators fitted for many patients

For a Pittsburgh patient fitted with a defibrillator, probably nothing could be more disconcerting than to discover the defibrillator contained fatal flaws. What would be worse - and what eventually led to products liability claims - is that the manufacturer probably knew of the flaws but never warned doctors or patients about the product defects.

Though problems with defibrillators arose back in 2005, it appears that manufacturers of such products have done little to nothing to eliminate such problems. And since the flaws in the original defibrillators have not been corrected, individuals continue to be fitted with defective defibrillators.

Recently a study has shown that a wiring problem concerning certain brands of defibrillators has led to as many as 20 deaths. The death rate may actually be much higher as the company responsible has not disclosed all of the various claims. The electrical problems still exist and as many as 128,000 patients have been fitted with defibrillators that may contain this defective wiring.

One can only guess as to the reasons why a known problem in using such defibrillators still exists. It's possible that the manufacturers simply did not study the causes of deaths of patients fitted with these devices. This is particularly disturbing as many heart specialists have felt the death rate in the use of such devices has been unusually high.

Such failure to act is what results in attorneys bringing lawsuits against companies. Manufacturers of medical products in particular have an extremely high duty to make their products safe. Individuals are fitted with the defibrillators as a life saving procedure. Such individuals are required to go under the knife to have such devices placed within the body itself. No one would undergo such a procedure if they felt the outcome could result in death.

Source: The New York Times, "Device Malfunction Casts Doubt on Industry Pledge," by Barry Meier and Katie Thomas, April 18, 2012

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Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.
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Pittsburgh, PA 15222

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