A pacemaker is a device that helps regulate the heart rate. It is implanted in a patient’s chest and sends electrical pulses to the heart to keep it beating at a steady rhythm.
While most patients who receive a pacemaker do not experience any problems, there is always a risk of injury or death associated with any procedure involving the heart.
Were you injured as the result of a malfunctioning pacemaker? If so, you may be able to file a medical malpractice or product liability lawsuit against the maker.
Contact an experienced Chicago personal injury attorney at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC to learn more about your legal options. You may also be able to file a products liability lawsuit against the device maker of your pacemaker.
Contact defective medical lawyers at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal advice and schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
What Is a Pacemaker?
A pacemaker is a system that constantly monitors the heart rhythm used, providing electric shocks if it’s out of sync. The device is implanted in the shoulder, stomach, or near the heart, and wires are attached to it that would be used to send electricity.
The device works by constantly measuring the user’s heart rate, using little electric shocks to keep it at a steady rhythm.
People with pacemakers are often concerned that the device would stop working, and a person can lose consciousness. However, when a defective pacemaker stops working, the patient may go without realizing it has stopped because it is implanted inside their body.
Determining Potential Defendants to Sue Over a Defective Pacemaker: Medical Negligence or Product Liability
Medical device manufacturers may be liable for a pacemaker failure if it can be shown that the manufacturer altered the performance of their product. Additionally, when a heart regulating device fails or causes injuries, the patient can file a lawsuit due to another person’s action or inaction.
People can sue their company when a pacemaker fails in one of three ways:
- If a heart pacemaker or electric lead fails due to a defect in the device, then the manufacturer should be held liable.
- If a pacemaker is installed incorrectly, the hospital, the doctor who performed the procedure, or a third party should be held liable.
- If a third party shuts down or damages a pacemaker, they should be responsible under the law.
It’s very difficult to know if a device has been compromised or not before it could cause problems. Someone could experience adverse effects after a procedure years after the event.
If the device defect is from a faulty design or manufactured by another company, that component manufacturer will also be responsible and should be sued. Product liability claims are generally filed against manufacturers, while medical negligence cases will be filed against the hospital and doctor.
Food and Drug Administration: The Inherent Risk of Pacemakers
According to the Food and Drug Administration, pacemakers were initially used to treat very few people, and there was a lower chance of something going wrong. Now doctors implant these cardiac-regulating devices in an estimated 300,000 patients worldwide each year, and it is less likely that all will go well.
The makers of pacemakers need to be held responsible when their devices cause injuries or death. Additionally, the maker of pacemakers must produce safe devices that will work as intended to avoid injuries to patients.
People injured by defective pacemakers should speak with an attorney about legal options to determine if their device is part of a recall.
People could file medical malpractice or products liability cases if a defective Medtronic heart pacemaker caused injuries or fatality. Still, it may be difficult to prove the device maker was at fault.
Filing a Medical Malpractice Action
When defective pacemakers cause injuries and trauma, patients can seek compensation by filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. A lawyer can help build a case against the device manufacturer or others responsible for causing serious injuries.
It is possible that pursuing a case might not be worth it if any of the following conditions apply:
- The person must have been injured by complications from a faulty device or implant surgery.
- They must file a lawsuit within a year from when the incident occurred.
- If there is more than one defendant, it’s necessary to determine if each defendant is responsible.
- It should be apparent that a pacemaker or other medical device caused the patient significant harm.
- The person injured must prove how an implant caused them damage.
Winning a civil suit can be difficult, but it’s necessary to ensure someone has legal standing when filing a medical malpractice action for a loved one or themselves.
When filing a medical malpractice claim, keep all health care records and care documents related to the implant surgery and the serious injury sustained by the patient. There is evidence available to help build a strong case against those liable for causing an injury or claiming their life in many cases.
It may be necessary to consult with a lawyer who could provide advice related to pursuing compensation for an injury or fatality caused by a defective medical device.
Hiring a Product Defect Lawyer to Resolve a Pacemaker Case
Taking on complex legal issues is challenging, but it may be necessary to file a claim to seek justice when someone’s loved one has been injured or died from complications of a faulty product.
Our lawyers accept all lawsuits and claims on a contingency fee agreement, meaning no upfront fees are paid until the case is resolved. Contact our lawyers now at (888) 424-5757 for additional information, legal help, or schedule a free consultation.