Understanding Bard PowerPort Device Complications and Lawsuits - Shuman Legal

Understanding Bard PowerPort Device Complications and Lawsuits

Last updated Thursday, October 19th, 2023

Understanding Bard PowerPort Device Complications and Lawsuits

Injured by a Bard PowerPort Catheter? Here’s How You Can Get Compensated

Imagine you’re suffering a major accident or illness and have to be admitted to a hospital. It takes a lot to protect your body and support your immunity during treatment. But what if the medical device that was supposed to be your lifeline was actually sabotaging your recovery? What if it made your condition even worse?

That’s the real-life nightmare several Bard PowerPort catheter users went through all across the country. The first Bard PowerPort device was introduced in 2000 after earning its FDA approval. It was a simple yet revolutionary device that could be implanted under a patient’s skin to efficiently deliver medications to their bloodstream.

They connect a polyurethane catheter tube with an injection port to one of your large central veins. It allows you to smoothly receive medical fluids or give blood without being poked around by needles all day long.

These convenient and affordable devices were quickly adopted by medical facilities worldwide to improve long-term patient care. However, both patients and doctors were clueless that this life-saving device could have a life-threatening effect. Medical errors are the third leading cause of death after heart disease and cancer. And the recent breakout of Bard PowerPort lawsuits adds to this unfortunate trend.

Some patients, who were supposed to take medicines through their bloodstream, were actually taking in a cocktail of toxins. How is that even possible?!

The catheter device material was breaking down and sneaking into the body. Severe infections, blood clots, cardiac punctures, and a lot of other health issues followed.

Unfortunately, Bard knew about the growing complications caused by this design defect but failed to act. They haven’t even issued a recall of the PowerPort device yet.

But you don’t have to wait for them to act to protect your well-being.

Do You Have a Case?
Call us at 312-422-0700Talk to Our Experienced Chicago Mass Tort Lawyer to Find Out!

More victims in every state are stepping up every month to hold Bard accountable for their injuries. It’s highly likely that this legal battle will turn into a class action MDL against Bard.

If you or your loved one have been injured by a Bard PowerPort device, you deserve to be compensated. Get in touch with our experienced team of product liability lawyers to see if you qualify for a Bard PowerPort lawsuit.

Understanding Product Liability in Bard PowerPort Lawsuits

Man suffering chest pain due to a defective bard port catheter A US Consumer Product Safety Commission study revealed that defective products cause over 29.4 million injuries and 21,400 deaths each year.

How do you hold manufacturers accountable for their negligence? That’s what product liability law was meant to provide. It places a duty of care on every manufacturer and seller for the product they place in the customer’s hands.

Every product must meet the ordinary expectations of the customer. Any defect that compromises product quality or endangers the customer violates this duty. It allows customers to take legal action against the manufacturer to get compensated for their injuries and damages.

In this case, the spotlight is on Bard Access Systems Inc., C.R. Bard, Inc., and Becton Dickson & Company. This multi-billion dollar medical technology giant manufactured the defective Bard PowerPort catheter devices.

Injured victims allege that Bard failed them on multiple fronts including:

  • Failing to disclose the risks tied to the device
  • Concealing health issues reported by users
  • Not initiating a timely product recall
  • Failing to provide a safer alternative design

Do You Have a Case?
Call us at 312-422-0700Talk to Our Experienced Chicago Mass Tort Lawyer to Find Out!

Design defect lawsuits are always more complex when it comes to proving liability. However, they can leave a huge dent in the manufacturer’s brand and finances if they’re liable for it. Why? Because they may have to issue a massive product recall and face an avalanche of lawsuits. Perhaps that’s why companies like Bard try to quietly bury or settle the issue before it spreads like wildfire.

Bard PowerPort device suffers from a major design defect. It’s the mechanical integrity of the catheter tubes to blame. It uses a flexible polymer composed of polyurethane and barium sulfate called Chronoflex.

The current lawsuits are pointing to the high concentrations of barium sulfate as the source of the mechanical failure. It makes the catheter tubes prone to fissuring, cracking, and fracturing.

The lack of proportionate mixing of the polymer leads to pockets of barium sulfate and entrapped air being distributed through the device. The lawsuits also allege that Bard knew about these problems for years without taking any corrective measures. There were higher failure reports associated with Bard PowerPort catheters compared to its competitors in the market.

They failed to disclose these risks to the medical community and didn’t conduct adequate post-marketing surveillance to track these issues. Bard continued to advertise its PowerPort catheters as being safe to use despite the controversy.

Catheter Fracture and Migration: Key Defects and Serious Injuries

What happens when a plastic tube connected to your body experiences wear and tear? Nothing pleasant, obviously. These little broken plastic pieces can break into your vascular system and wreak havoc.

Here are some of the biggest health problems caused by catheter fractures:

  • Blood clots
  • Damage to blood vessels
  • Hematomas
  • Cardiac arrhythmia
  • Cardiac punctures
  • Pulmonary embolism

Some lawsuits have pointed out another reason for their injuries – catheter migration.

It’s possible that the unwanted shifting of the catheter tube can cause significant damage, such as:

  • Restricted blood flow
  • Catheter failure
  • Infection
  • Damage to organs

The Role of Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) in Streamlining Cases

A multidistrict litigation (MDL) is essentially a super lawsuit. It allows a federal district court to consolidate a huge number of similar lawsuits against the same defendant. It eliminates the need to file hundreds or thousands of cases and streamlines the legal process for all parties involved.

A judge is allotted to the MDL who is responsible for overseeing the trial in a federal district court. The lead attorneys representing the plaintiffs will file a joint complaint, which needs to be answered by the defendants. Both sides then get busy gathering evidence and conducting other pre-trial processes to counter each other.

However, it’s important to note that each plaintiff will have to maintain their individual case. Their damages will be determined based on the injuries they’ve suffered. There won’t be a uniform settlement offered to every victim.

Also, it’s possible that the attorneys ultimately fail to reach a settlement that applies to all cases. In this case, the litigations may be shifted back to individual district courts for trial.

Here’s how a Bard PowerPort class action MDL can streamline the legal process:

  • Pool your finances to cut down litigation costs
  • Build up a stronger pool of evidence and network of witnesses
  • Avoid duplicative discovery while gathering evidence
  • Prevent inconsistent rulings
  • Accelerates the legal process

On June 12th, 2023, the plaintiffs filed a motion requesting the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) to consolidate all Bard PowerPort lawsuits into a class action MDL. They argued that the number of lawsuits with similar complications is escalating every month. However, the manufacturer is trying to resist this push so far.

The JPML is still reviewing oral testimonies to decide if a class action MDL is the best course of action. If they approve it, the plaintiffs will benefit from a coordinated discovery process and faster pretrial proceedings.

MDLs have brought a wave of relief for judges and attorneys too. The courts have been able to reach faster and fairer outcomes by evening the legal playing field against corporate giants. It prevents any party from clogging down the legal system and using their extensive resources to delay justice.

Do You Have a Case?
Call us at 312-422-0700Talk to Our Experienced Chicago Mass Tort Lawyer to Find Out!

Injuries Linked to Bard PowerPort Device

Sick Woman in BedLet’s make one thing clear. You don’t have a case to make if you don’t have a clear trail of medical evidence to present. Your compensation depends on the severity of your injuries.

That’s why it’s vital to get all your health issues diagnosed by a doctor and begin treatment right away. You’ll also be able to get their opinion about the possibility of these issues being tied to the defective catheter port.

Here are some of the most commonly reported injuries associated with the Bard PowerPort implant failure:

  • Infection – You may think a little infection isn’t a big deal. But when you’re already struggling to recover from a major health condition, an infection can be disastrous. You may experience symptoms like fever, chills, inflammation, swelling, pus, change in urine color or odor.
  • Catheter fracture injuries – Small pieces of the polyurethane tube may start chipping away and slipping into your bloodstream. It can lead to severe injuries like thromboembolism, cardiac arrythmia, organ damage, hemorrhage, cardiac tamponade, severe pain, and perforated tissues. Most of these complications require urgent medical attention because of their life-threatening nature.
  • Catheter migration injuries – Catheter migration injuries are usually limited to restricted blood flow, organ damage, infection, and failure to deliver medication. It can also lead to potential cardiac issues in more serious cases.
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) – Blood clots or deep vein thrombosis can have unpredictable effects. If the clot travels to any of your major organs, it could put your life at serious risk. They are particularly dangerous because they may not produce many side effects initially until their fatal blow.
  • Vascular Damage – The PowerPort catheter tube can also tear through your blood vessels and other tissues. It can lead to infections in the surrounding area where the catheter is inserted. It can even cause death of the tissue (necrosis), which cannot be reversed.

Gathering Evidence for a Strong Lawsuit

Have you studied the pattern of every successful defective product MDL? It starts out with a few scattered consumer reports of their injuries. Eventually, a breakthrough study comes out that scientifically links product defects to consumer injuries. More people start filing lawsuits, more studies are conducted, and more investigations are conducted by the relevant authorities.

Do you see the pattern now?

Layer by layer, evidence piles up until your cause becomes undeniable.

The stronger your evidence, the better your settlement will be. And you need to do your part to arm your attorneys with everything they need to make your claim undeniable.

Here are the essential pieces of evidence you’ll need to build your Bard PowerPort lawsuit:

  • An official diagnosis of your injuries supported by medical reports
  • A transparent trail of all medical expenses
  • Medical records
  • Treatment information
  • Employment details
  • Pictures and videos of the initial injury and its progression
  • Witness testimony

Assessing Damages: Determining Compensation Eligibility

Here are the damages you can seek compensation for by filing a lawsuit:

  • Past and projected medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning potential
  • Permanent disability
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Punitive damages

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the Bard PowerPort Device, and how does it work?

A Bard PowerPort catheter tube can be implanted under your skin to efficiently deliver medication directly to your bloodstream.

For instance, you won’t have to keep getting punctured by needles every time you go for a chemo treatment.


What are the potential complications and injury risks associated with the Bard PowerPort Device?

The Bard PowerPort device uses a material with questionable mechanical integrity. It has led to several cases where the plastic tubing breaks into pieces and enters the patient’s bloodstream. Or, it gets dislodged causing another set of complications.

Here are the most widely reported complications caused by catheter fractures and catheter migration:

  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Blood vessel damage
  • Hematomas
  • Cardiac arrhythmia
  • Cardiac punctures
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Restricted blood flow
  • Catheter failure
  • Infection
  • Organ damage

Who may qualify to file a Bard PowerPort Lawsuit seeking financial compensation?

You need to fulfill the following criteria to qualify for a Bard PowerPort lawsuit:

  • You have received a Bard PowerPort device implant
  • You have a clear medical history to demonstrate the health complications you faced after using it
  • You are filing the case under the statute of limitations


How does product liability play a role in Bard PowerPort Lawsuits against Bard Access Systems Inc.?

Bard Access Systems Inc. holds the biggest share of liability in these lawsuits. It’s clear that the product liability is due to a manufacturer design defect. The manufacturer failed to inform both patients and medical practitioners about the risks associated with their product.

What common defects lead to catheter fractures and migration in the Bard PowerPort Device?

It’s speculated that the improper mixing of the polymer used in Bard PowerPort catheters is the root cause of their failure. It creates pockets of entrapped air and barium sulfate throughout the catheter tubes. This makes them vulnerable to cracks, fissures, and fractures. fissuring, cracking, and fracturing.


What injuries are typically linked to the Bard PowerPort Device?

Here are the injuries typically linked to Bard PowerPort catheters:

  • Infections – fever, chills, inflammation, swelling, pus, change in urine color or odor.
  • Catheter fracture injuries – Thromboembolism, cardiac arrythmia, organ damage, hemorrhage, cardiac tamponade, severe pain, and perforated tissues.
  • Catheter migration injuries – Restricted blood flow, organ damage, infection, and failure to deliver medication.
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) – Blood clots that lead to organ damage or hemorrhage.
  • Vascular Damage – Damage to blood vessels, tissue damage, or necrosis.

How does Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) streamline complex Bard PowerPort cases?

A Bard PowerPort class action MDL can clear your path to a faster and fairer settlement. You can pool your legal and financial resources with several other plaintiffs to take on a multi-billion dollar company’s legal army. Attorneys can lead a coordinated discovery process and fast-track pretrial proceedings.

What evidence is crucial for a successful Bard PowerPort Lawsuit, and how can it be gathered?

Here is some of the crucial evidence you need to gather to build your case:

  • An official medical diagnosis of your health issues
  • Medical bills
  • Prior medical records
  • Treatment details
  • Employment information
  • Pictures and videos of your injuries
  • Witness testimony


What factors are considered when assessing damages in a Bard PowerPort Lawsuit?

Here are the key factors that will be assessed while determining your settlement amount:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages/earning potential
  • Permanent disability
  • Mental anguish
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages

How can individuals affected by the Bard PowerPort Device seek legal assistance from Shuman Legal?

An MDL can fast-track your compensation process, but it can’t guarantee the compensation you’ll be awarded. Each settlement will be based on the strength of the individual plaintiff’s case. So you’ll still need an experienced product liability lawyer to build your case.

At Shuman Legal, we have a proven track record of winning defective medical product lawsuits against giant companies like Bard. Call us today for a free legal consultation. And once we’re fighting in your corner, we guarantee you won’t have to pay us anything until we win your settlement.

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