Posted on Friday, August 28th, 2020 at 4:46 am
We expect the medical devices used to treat our injuries or illnesses to be safe to use. We do not expect to be injured by a medical device. Unfortunately, defective medical devices injure and cause the death of thousands of people each year.
When a medical device injures a person, the person may be entitled to substantial compensation for damages. However, filing claims for defective medical devices can be complicated. You must prove that the device was defective and the defect resulted in your injury. Proving those requirements often requires extensive research and investigations. Medical experts, engineers, and other experts may be required to assist with the investigation.
Our Sacramento product liability lawyers can help you with claims related to defective medical devices. We have extensive experience handling these types of personal injury cases.
What is a Medical Device?
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines a medical device as an implement, instrument, implant, apparatus, machine, in vitro reagent, contrivance, or another related article that is recognized by the United States Pharmacopoeia, the National Formulary, or a supplement of either entity. The device is used to cure, diagnose, treat, mitigate, or prevent disease. It may also be intended to affect the function or structure of the body.
Therefore, an artificial knee or a dialysis machine is a medical device. However, a thermometer and a catheter tube are also medical devices.
Most medical devices used in medical facilities and sold to consumers are subject to strict standards and checks to ensure they are safe for their intended use. That does not mean that the use of a medical device could not pose any risks.
For example, exposure to x-rays has a small increase in the possibility of developing cancer later in life. However, the benefits of using an x-ray machine outweigh the risks. Therefore, x-ray machines are approved for use with patients.
There is a difference in known harmful side effects and a defect.
Who is Liable for Defective Medical Devices?
Under product liability laws, several parties could be held liable for defective medical devices. The designer of the device can be held liable if the device is inherently defective. In other words, something in the way that the device was designed makes it dangerous or hazardous to use.
A manufacturer can be held liable if the defect occurred during the manufacturing process. For example, the manufacturer used inferior quality materials to construct the device, which led to a defect. The manufacturer could have poor quality control or could have changed the design of the medical device to decrease costs.
Distributors and sellers can also be held liable for defective medical devices. If they advertise the product for uses other than the intended use or failed to provide adequate warnings and instructions, those actions could lead to a product liability claim.
In some cases, a physician or medical facility could also be liable for injuries caused by defective medical devices. If the medical provider failed to remove recalled medical devices or used a medical device it knew to be defective or dangerous, that party might also be liable in a product liability claim.
Do I Need a Sacramento Product Liability Lawyer?
Defective medical devices can cause life-threatening conditions and permanent disabilities. If a defective medical device has injured you or a family member, you need an attorney to help you file a claim.
Call (916) 999-9000 now for a free consultation with one of our Sacramento product liability lawyers. Let us help you hold the party or parties responsible for your injuries accountable for their negligence and wrongdoing.