The Bard PowerPort (also known as the “BardPort”) is a port catheter device that is implanted just under the skin to allow for easy attachment to a catheter for the intravenous delivery of fluids or medication. The Bard PowerPort has inherent design and manufacturing flaws that make the device prone to fracturing and migrating out of position. This can cause serious injuries including internal vascular damage.
Individuals who suffered injuries as a result of a defective Bard PowerPort device are now bringing product liability lawsuits against the manufacturer of the PowerPort implants. Our firm is currently accepting new cases from anyone who had a Bard PowerPort port cath device implanted and was injured due to a fracture, migration, or other failures of the implant.
About the Bard PowerPort
The Bard PowerPort is one of several varieties of port/catheter systems that has been designed, manufactured, marketed, and sold by Bard Access Systems, Inc. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD). The PowerPort is a totally implantable vascular access device designed to provide repeated access to the vascular system for the delivery of medication, intravenous fluids, parenteral nutrition solutions, and blood products.
The intended purpose of the Bard PowerPort is to make it easier to deliver medications directly into the patient’s bloodstream. The device is surgically placed completely under the skin and left implanted. The PowerPort is a system consisting of two primary components: an injection port and a polyurethane catheter.
The injection port has a raised center, or “septum,” where the needle is inserted for delivery of the medication. The medication is carried from the port into the bloodstream through a small, flexible tube, called a catheter, that is inserted into a blood vessel. The PowerPort is used on patients who require repeated and prolonged access to the vascular system for IV administration of fluids or medication.
The catheter part of the PowerPort is made from a polyurethane material called Chronoflex AL. A flaw in the chemical design and manufacturing for the Chronoflex catheters resulted in the PowerPort being weaker and less durable than it should have been. As a result of these inherent flaws, the PowerPort is prone to fracturing, migrating, and otherwise malfunctioning after being implanted.
Injuries Linked to the Defective PowerPort
The manufacturing and design problems with the Bard PowerPort make the implant highly susceptible to fracturing after being implanted. Fracturing of the port implant can often cause it to migrate and cause vascular damage. The PowerPort is also prone to a number of other malfunctions.
Fracture and migration of the PowerPort has led to a variety of very serious injuries including: hemorrhage; cardiac/pericardial tamponade (pressure caused by a collection of blood in the area around the heart); thromboembolism; infection; cardiac arrhythmia; severe and persistent pain; and perforations of tissue, vessels and organs, or the need for additional surgeries to remove the defective device. Many of these complications can even be life-threatening.
Bard Had Reason to Know About the Problems With the PowerPort
Soon after the PowerPort was introduced on the market, Bard began receiving large numbers of adverse event reports (“AERs”) from healthcare providers reporting that the PowerPort was fracturing post-implantation. Bard also received large numbers of AERs reporting that implant was found to have perforated internal vasculature.
As a result of these reports, Bard was aware or should have been aware that the PowerPort had a substantially higher failure rate than other similar products on the market. Bard should also have been aware that the problems with the PowerPort were related to flaws in the Chronoflex material used to make the device. Despite this knowledge, Bard failed to warn consumers of this risks and failed to adopt a different, more reliable material.
Bard PowerPort Lawsuits
Over the last few years, the defects in the PowerPort have led to a growing number of Bard PowerPort lawsuits. These lawsuits are being filed by individuals who had the Bard PowerPort implanted and were seriously injured when the PowerPort fractured or malfunctioned post-implantation.
The lawsuits are being filed against the manufacturer, Bard Access Systems Inc., and its parent company, Beckton Dickinson. The product liability lawsuits allege that Bard was aware of the problems with the device. They also allege that rather than alter the design of the PowerPort to make it safer or adequately warn of the dangers associated with the PowerPort, Bard continued to actively and aggressively market the device as safe, despite their knowledge of numerous reports of catheter fracture, infection and other serious injuries.
Moreover, the lawsuits claim that Bard’s warnings suggested that fracture of the device could only occur if the physician incorrectly placed the device such that “compression or pinch-off” was allowed to occur. In reality, however, Bard knew internally these devices were fracturing and causing serious injuries due to defects in the design, manufacturing and lack of adequate warnings. In other words, Bard tried to blame the flaws in the device on the doctors.
Who is Eligible to File a Bard PowerPort Lawsuit?
Anyone who meets the following criteria may be eligible to file a Bard PowerPort lawsuit and seek financial compensation:
- You had a Bard PowerPort device (or another Bard port/cath device) implanted
- Your Bard PowerPort fractured, migrated, or otherwise malfunctions post-implantation
- You suffered serious physical injuries as a direct result of the problems experienced with your PowerPort implant
Some of the more common injuries related to failure or malfunction of the Bard PowerPort implant are:
- Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
- Infection related to the PowerPort
- Cardiac problems
- Perforation of veins or other tissue by the PowerPort
Bard PowerPort Complications & Failures
The design flaws and manufacturing issues with the Bard PowerPort have made the device prone to 3 primary complications or post-implantation failures. These 3 primary complications are described below.
Fracture of the PowerPort
The most common failure or complication experienced with the Bard PowerPort is fracture of the port. The flaws with the material that the PowerPort is made from make it brittle. As a result, the tubing and other parts of the device are prone to fracture or break off and become lodged in the patient’s vascular system. Fracture of the PowerPort can lead to very serious injuries and vascular damage.
Migration of the PowerPort
The same design flaws that make the Bard PowerPort likely to fracture, also make the device prone to post-implantation migration (moving out of its original position). The migration usually involves the flexible tube parts that are inserted into the blood vessel. Migration can occur by itself or in combination with a fracture of the Bard PowerPort.
The flawed nature of the material that the Bard PowerPort is made out of allow bacteria to enter when the material fractures or becomes degraded. As a result, infections originating at the site of the port are the third major complication associated with this device.
Contact Us About a Bard PowerPort Lawsuit
Our firm is currently accepting new cases from individuals who were injured by a defective Bard PowerPort implant. Contact us today at 800-553-8082 for a free consultation.