Bard Power Port: Does it Cause Serious Complications?

Medical technology breakthroughs have revolutionized patient care. Over the past few decades, lots of innovative solutions have emerged, but one medical device that has been gaining ground in healthcare is Bard Power Port.  

Mainly, healthcare professionals use this device to administer medications and intravenous fluids (IV) directly into a patient’s vein. Besides, it’s used in the treatment of chemotherapy. 

As Bard Power Port reduces the number of needle sticks needed for drawing blood and administering medications or fluids, it’s considered a novel device. Nevertheless, it has been under fire in recent years. A growing number of people are linking the device with serious health issues. Are the claims true or not? We’ll answer that in this guide.  

What are Bard Power Port Devices?

Bard Power Port is a catheter system that provides immediate access to the vascular system, allowing healthcare professionals to deliver medications, nutritional solutions, and intravenous fluids with ease. The Power Port consists of a polyurethane catheter, which is inserted into the blood vessel, and an injection port. This catheter system is implanted underneath the skin and is left there. 

The Bard Power Port device allows doctors to take blood samples or deliver life-saving chemicals to patients receiving treatments for chronic illnesses like cancer. The first of Bard Access Systems’ port-a-cath or implantable devices was introduced in 2000 after it earned its first approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 

Critical Issues Surrounding Bard Power Port  

While it delivers medications and fluids efficiently into the bloodstream of patients, numerous problems have been reported with the design of the Bard Power Port. Certain ports by Bard are prone to migrating into other parts of the body or fracturing. 

This is due to the material used to manufacture these devices. Bard uses barium sulfate along with polyurethane in its Power Port devices. Over time, barium sulfate can detach itself from the catheter, making it more susceptible to fracturing and migrating into other body parts. This design and manufacturing flaw impacts the safety and durability of the port-a-cath, putting people at risk of serious injuries. 

Several people who have been injured by the Power Port have filed lawsuits against the manufacturer. Bard Power Port lawsuits allege that Bard’s implantable ports are inherently flawed, which could lead to infections, blood clots, fractures, and other complications, asserts TorHoerman Law. 

As of January 2024, 69 active lawsuits are pending in Arizona MDL (multidistrict litigation). The Bard Power Port lawsuits are still in their early stages, which means no settlement has been made yet. However, lawyers estimate that the Bard Power Port lawsuit settlement amount could be anywhere between $10,000 and $250,000. 

Injuries Linked to Bard’s Defective port-a-cath Devices

Bard Access Systems, the manufacturer of Bard Power Port, is facing product liability lawsuits because its fractured ports are linked to several injuries. Some of them mentioned in the lawsuit are as follows:

1. Septic Embolism

A recent lawsuit filed against Bard Access Systems claimed that Bard’s port-a-cath caused septic embolism. The blockage of a blood vessel, usually by an infected thrombus that passes through the bloodstream from a far-off infectious source, is known as septic embolism. 

The plaintiff, Ryan Meadors, was implanted with Bard Power Port in 2021 to receive immunoglobulin infusions. But, less than a year later, he experienced nausea, abdominal pain, and vomiting due to a septic embolism caused by the port catheter. As a result, he had to undergo surgery to get rid of the defective device from his body. 

In the lawsuit, Ryan Meadors alleges that the manufacturer knew of the risks associated with the use of their implantable ports. Yet, they didn’t warn the medical community or the patients. 

Users who developed septic embolism due to Bard’s implantable ports have experienced the following symptoms:

  • Sudden shortness of breath, irrespective of whether at rest or active
  • Coughing with or without bloody mucus
  • Heart palpitations
  • Dizziness
  • Chest pain

Bard Power Port users who experience these symptoms must seek immediate medical treatment. Without expeditious and appropriate care, a septic embolism can cause damage to the heart or the lungs. 

2. Hemothorax 

Another complication linked with the use of Bard Power Port is hemothorax

The collection of blood in the pleural cavity is known as hemothorax. The pleural cavity is the area between the lungs and the chest wall. Hemothorax is a serious condition. If left untreated, blood will accumulate in the pleural space, which eventually causes the lungs to collapse. 

Symptoms of hemothorax include:

  • Dyspnea or shortness of breath
  • Hypotension or low blood pressure
  • Hyperventilation or rapid breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Rapid heart rate

3. Cardiac Tamponade

When abnormal amounts of blood or other fluids accumulate in the pericardial sac and compress the heart, it’s known as cardiac tamponade. The excess pressure from the fluid prevents the heart from filling blood properly. Thus, the body doesn’t work properly. 

Bard Power Port users who are predisposed to cardiac complications are more susceptible to this condition. Symptoms of cardiac tamponade include:

  • Sharp pain in the chest, which could worsen when you cough, lie flat, or breathe deeply
  • Dizziness, fainting, or lightheadedness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Breathing rapidly or having trouble breathing

To sum things up, injuries connected with Bard Power Port implantable devices are severe, life-threatening, as well as life-altering. Besides the ones mentioned above, these port-a-cath devices can cause cardiac arrhythmia, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), hemorrhaging, and hematomas. 

Treatment for injuries related to Bard Power Port is expensive and can lead to considerable financial strain. However, you don’t have to bear the expense alone. You can recover compensation for injuries sustained by filing a lawsuit against the manufacturer. Bear in mind that you will only be able to recover damages if you prove you were injured by the use of the port-a-catheter. 

As navigating the legal landscape alone is challenging, consider hiring a lawyer. From gathering evidence to preparing a solid case, an experienced lawyer will do everything to help you win fair compensation. That is why we advise you to hire them. 

Just be sure to check reviews before you hire a lawyer for your Bard Power Port lawsuit. That way, you will be able to sift out competent attorneys from incompetent ones. 

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