Dialysis related heart attacks have been connected with the Fresenius Medical Care products Naturalyte and Granuflo. When it comes to kidney dialysis machines and disposable products, Fresenius is the leading supplier. Despite their links to cardiopulmonary arrest when used improperly, these products are widely prescribed. They are used by healthcare professionals all over the United States in Fresenius and non-Fresenius operated clinics alike.
Excess water and waste are removed from the blood during dialysis. The process is used as a treatment for kidney failure. It works by neutralizing the acid in a patient’s blood using the alkaline substance, bicarbonate. Products used in this treatment usually have ingredients that the body can metamorphose into bicarbonate. Due to higher levels of this ingredient in the Fresenius products, a surplus builds up that results in a greater risk of sudden cardiac arrest and death. This issue of the blood becoming alkaline is known as alkalosis. The difference between the two products is that Naturalyte is a liquid with acetic acid as an ingredient, while Granuflo is a powder that utilizes sodium diacetate.
Although Fresenius was aware of the hazards of improper use of their product and made efforts to notify users, it is still possible to file a suit against them for dialysis related heart attacks. Normally, when someone decides to take a prescription after an adequate warning, adverse side effects that appear are not basis for a lawsuit. In this instance of dialysis prompted heart attacks, it appears as though some patients received warning while others did not. It is believed that non-Fresenius clinics were informed of the danger months after facilities that are operated by Fresenius received the memo. Patients belonging to these non-Fresenius clinics may have been put at greater risk due to this failure to caution. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration is conducting investigations to determine if relevant safety information was withheld by Fresenius.
Without consulting a doctor, treatment should never be discontinued. When comparing patients with high levels and normal levels of bicarbonate in their blood, it was found that those with greater amounts were six times more likely to suffer from cardiac arrest. Proper usage was not associated with the same increased risk of dialysis linked heart attacks. For example, adjusting the dosage based on the bicarbonate level of the patient can help to prevent these cardiac issues. However, a recall was still issued for these products in March of 2012. Receiving the counsel of a professional attorney may reveal the available legal options and whether a statute of limitations is a constraint.
The Terry Bryant Accident and Injury Law firm is based in Houston, and staffed by Board Certified professionals. Determining if a lawsuit is viable is as easy as filling out their free consultation form or making a call to (800) 444-5000. They realize the seriousness of neglecting to inform patients of the risks associated with the use of a product. The firm is dedicated to helping victims receive due compensation. Consulting a personal injury attorney with previous experience of litigation concerning someone suffering from medical conditions caused by dialysis, especially heart attacks, may be helpful in determining what the next step should be.