A $3.3 million jury verdict from 2021 that penalized the medical device company C.R. Bard for injuries sustained as a result of the use of Bard’s inferior vena cava (IVC) filter has been affirmed by an appeals court.

IVC filters are implantable devices that are intended to break up clotted material in blood vessels in order to prevent strokes, embolisms, or other adverse vascular effects. 

The plaintiff, a nurse whose implanted IVC filter fractured, leading to injuries from debris embedded in her heart, is one of 8,000 people who have filed similar product liability lawsuits against Bard for injuries suffered as a result of the IVC filters moving, breaking, or puncturing the surrounding tissue leading to pain, injury, or even life-threatening complications. These more than 8,000 cases were deemed similar enough that they were eventually consolidated into a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in 2015, About Lawsuits reported.

In the ensuing years, most of the IVC filter lawsuits involved in the MDL settled before going to trial. In 2019, enough cases had been settled that U.S. District Judge David G. Campbell decided to remand the remaining cases back to their original district courts. 

In their appeal, attorneys representing C.R. Bard argued that one of the plaintiff’s expert witnesses provided different testimony at trial than was discussed in the discovery and deposition phase. Additionally, Bard argued that the plaintiff’s treating physician should not have been allowed to testify since they ignored the subpoena. 

In response, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit addressed each argument before ultimately finding in favor of the plaintiff. First, with regard to the shifting testimony of the expert witness, the Appeals Court did agree that changing the testimony was likely a violation of the court rules. However, since Bard did not raise an objection to the expert witness’ testimony at the trial court level, they forfeited their right to seek an appeal over the issue. With regards to the testimonial objections that Bard did raise, the Appeals Court noted that they were addressed and agreed with their resolution. 

With regard to the treating physician’s testimony, the Court noted that while the subpoena was ignored, Bard was warned that the plaintiffs intended to call the physician as a witness and, ultimately, they did. 

If you have been injured by a defective product, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Contact MedTruth today and fill out a free case evaluation to begin your journey to justice.