Who Is Liable for Defective Medical Devices?

Tens of millions of Americans rely on medical devices, such as artificial joints and pacemakers, to improve their health, according to Consumer Reports. Although many medical devices alleviate pain and improve certain medical conditions, in some cases, medical devices are defective and end up injuring patients. For instance, vaginal mesh implants, which were designed to correct pelvic organ prolapse, have been linked to a number of serious injuries, including infections, pain, and other complications, and  metal-on-metal hip implants, such as the Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II, have been linked to a number of serious medical problems, including corrosion, metallosis, hypothyroidism, severe inflammation and swelling, and infection.

Liability of Medical Device Manufacturer

In many cases, the manufacturer of the defective medical device can be held liable in a product liability lawsuit. Like all manufacturers, medical device engineers and manufacturers have an obligation to provide safe medical devices to the public, and if a medical device is found to be dangerous or defective, the manufacturer has an obligation to remove the unsafe product from the market and correct any safety issues. The failure to do so in a prompt manner could result in liability assessed against the manufacturer.

Liability of Doctor or Hospital

In addition to product liability on the part of the medical device manufacturer, in some cases, a doctor or hospital that continue to use a medical device that is known to be dangerous or defective could be held liable in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

In order to sustain a medical malpractice lawsuit, the plaintiff must be able to prove the following:

  • The doctor or health care provider had a duty to provide appropriate medical care;
  • The doctor or health care provider deviated from the appropriate standard of care; and
  • The patient was injured as a direct result of the substandard medical care.

In other words, if the doctor or hospital was aware that the medical device might not be the safe for the patient, and the patient was injured as a result, the doctor or hospital could be found liable in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Contact a Medical Malpractice Lawyer

The Chicago medical malpractice attorneys at Cogan & Power are dedicated to obtaining maximum compensation on behalf of the victims of defective medical devices. In many cases, liability may be assessed against a doctor, hospital, and medical device manufacturer, in which case, we will pursue compensation all possible sources of liability. For instance, we recently obtained an $11.4 million verdict in a lawsuit against both a hospital and medical device manufacturer for the death of a patient due to a defective surgical device.

If you or a family member has been injured, or a loved one has died, as a result of a defective medical device, please contact our office at (312) 477-2500 to schedule a free consultation with one of our medical malpractice lawyers.