There has been much talk recently about IVC filter recalls in the media, which can leave one who has a filter feeling confused as it was initially implanted to save one’s life. However, if you have an IVC filter, you do have options available to you.
If you currently have a filter, you should reach out to your medical team immediately to discuss the possible removal of the device. Even if you have yet to experience any negative impact from the instrument, you should reach out to your doctor to discuss your timeline for keeping the device in your body. In addition, the Food and Drug Administration recommends for the device to be removed after an extended period. While the FDA has yet to issue a widespread IVC filter recall, they continue to keep a close eye on the situation.
While a device malfunction can be felt differently by individuals, the following have been reported as signs that you may have a malfunctioning device.
Abdominal or back pain is the most common experience for people with an IVC filter that is malfunctioning. The abdominal or back pain is typically caused by device migration. This is when the device moves from its original placement through the blood vessels and gets caught in an organ or vein. If you are experiencing lower back or abdominal pain, you should reach out to your doctor immediately to check if your device is still where it is supposed to be.
Pain in the lower extremities is also a common sign something may be wrong with your device. Often legs can become swollen as a result of the filter being clogged. If this is a symptom you are experiencing, you should seek medical attention immediately.
Finally, if a piece of the device has traveled into the heart, patients have reported feeling the following: nausea, light headedness, chest pain and shortness of breath. If you have an IVC and have any of these symptoms, you should seek emergency medical attention. If the device remains in the heart, it can cause stroke, hemorrhaging or even lead to death.
As you can see, the damage caused by an IVC filter can leave patients and their families with both physical and mental trauma. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of an IVC filter, you should reach out to an experienced attorney who is well versed in these complicated medical and legal matters. You are not alone, and a good lawyer will make sure you have the resources to recover from both the mental and physical injuries.