Caseload Growing in Philadelphia Against Rex and Argon in IVC Filter Litigation

Option Elite IVC Filter Litigation Rex Medical L.P., the designer of the Option and Option Elite IVC Filters as well as the distributor of these products, Argon Medical, face a growing number of lawsuits related to injuries that plaintiffs’ complaints allege were caused by these devices. (See a detailed list of complaints and attorneys below.)

We believe the majority, if not all, claims against Rex and Argon have been filed in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. Plaintiffs claim that jurisdiction is proper in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas under Pennsylvania Law partially due to the Pennsylvania citizenship of Rex Medical.

Although attorneys practicing in the IVC Filter litigation are well aware of the Bard  IVC Filter Litigation and Cook IVC Filter Federal Multidistrict Litigation, far less has been published about the Rex and Argon Medical IVC Filter Litigation underway in Philadelphia.

Pennsylvania allows for consolidation of common claims brought by plaintiffs against the same defendant. Although these consolidations are not Federal MDLs, they function much in the same manner.

Claims may be brought by plaintiffs against defendants in these consolidated litigations without regard to the plaintiff’s citizenship, so long as the plaintiff’s citizenship is within the United States.

Numerous medical device and pharmaceutical consolidated litigations have been heard in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas including the Risperdal Product Liability Litigation as well as a consolidated Xarelto Product Liability Litigation which is currently on going, while a Federal MDL also exists related to the same basic issues.

Currently, Judge Arnold New has designated the cases against Rex/Argon to the “Complex Litigation” track. Although the cases have yet to be consolidated for adjudication in the MDL-like process, we expect this to occur as more cases are filed in the Pa. Court of Common Pleas.

Judge New oversees all consolidated litigation in the Court of Common Pleas.

 

Plaintiffs Cases Filed Against Rex Medical and Argon Medical

Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas

Click on the Case Description to Access all documents including complaints for individual plaintiff cases:

Case Description

Date Filed

Case ID

Plaintiff Residence

Filter

Injury

DURBIN VS REX MEDICAL  17-Oct-16 161002290 California Option Efficacy

Injury

STOKAN VS REX MEDICAL  10-Oct-16 161001150 Arizona Option

Elite

Occlusion

Penetration

DUGAS VS REX MEDICAL 9-Sep-16 160900897 Texas Option Fracture

Migration

HARRIS VS REX MEDICAL 14-Jun-16 160601343 Georgia Option Injury

Other

MILLER VS REX MEDICAL 14-Jun-16 160601344 Louisiana Option Injury

Other

CASEMAN VS REX MEDICAL 7-Mar-16 160300207 Ohio Option Irretrievable

Injury

MONPLAISIR VS REX MEDICAL  3-Oct-16 161000070 Florida Option Injury

Death

AMOUR-WEST VS REX MEDICAL 13-Oct-16 161001566 Tennessee Option Injury

Other

STRODE VS REX MEDICAL  6-Sep-16 160900127 Tennesse Option Injury

Death

TURNER VS REX MEDICAL 5-Aug-16 160800773 Mississippi Option Fracture

Migration

THOMAS VS REX MEDICAL 8-Apr-16 160400816 Colorado Option

Elite

Irretrievable

Embedded

 Attorneys Filing Cases Against Rex Medical and Argon Medical

Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas

 

EISENBERG, ROTHWEILER, WINKLER, EISENBERG & JECK, P.C.

 

Stewart J. Eisenberg
Spruce Street Philadelphia, PA 19103
stewart@erlegal.com
215.546.6636

Villari Brandes & Giannone P.C.
Peter M Villari
Nicole T. Matteo
8 Tower Bridge
Suite 400
161 Washington Street
Conshohocken, PA 19428
(610) 832-8050
SEEGER WEISS LLP

Terri Anne Benedetto
1515 MARKET STREET, SUITE 1380
PHILADELPHIA PA 19102
tbenedetto@seegerweiss.com
(215)564-2300

NASTLAW LLC
1101 MARKET STREET
SUITE 2801
PHILADELPHIA PA 19107
(215)923-9300
 CURTIS LAW GROUP
William B. Curtis
12225 Greenville Ave
Suite 750 Dallas, TX 75243
bcurtis@curtis-lawgroup.com
214.890.1000
LAW OFFICES OF BEN C. MARTIN  
Ben C. Martin
3710 Rawlins Street, Suite 1230
Dallas, Texas 75219
bmartin@bencmartin.com
214.761.6614
FREESE AND GOSS, PLLC

 

Tim K. Goss
2905 Sackett St.
Houston, Texas 77098
tim@freeseandgoss.com
713.522.5250

MATTHEWS & ASSOCIATES
David P. Matthews
Lizy Santiago
3031 Allen Street, Suite 200
dmatthews@thematthewslawfirm.com
lsantiago@thematthewslawfirm.com
214.761.6610
Lopez McHugh, LLP

 

James J. McHugh, Jr
Carrie R. Capouellez
214 Flynn Avenue Moorestown
NJ 08057
ccapouellez@lopezmchugh.com
(856) 273-8500

Wagstaff & Cartmell, LLP

 

Thomas P. Cartmell
David C. DeGreeff
4740 Grand Ave.
Suite 300
Kansas City, MO 64112
(816) 701-1100

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IVC Filter Cases Settling Quietly as Litigation Grows

ivc filter2Manufacturers of defective IVC filter medical devices are settling cases behind the scenes, as litigation is building nationwide. The blood clot filters have been inserted in millions of patients over the last 40 years.

“All these products are defective,” said mass tort expert John Ray of Ft. Lauderdale, speaking in a webinar presented by The National Trial Lawyers. “I cannot say that one product is less defective than other.”

While specific settlements are suppressed by non-disclosure agreements, Ray said that a wrongful death case involving an IVC filter has a settlement value of $500,000. At the other extreme, a case involving the successful removal of an IVC filter without complications has a settlement value of $10,000.

  • Bard IVC Filter Litigation is consolidated in MDL 2641 in US District Court in Arizona. Bard essentially announced that it was settling cases in its September 2015 10-Q filing, where it stated, “While the company intends to vigorously defend Filter Product Claims that do not settle, including through litigation, it cannot give any assurances that the resolution of these claims will not have a material adverse effect on the company’s business…”  Ray says, “Bard has issues that will cause it to settle sooner rather than later. Bard got a lot of bad press about what they knew and when they knew it. Bottom line, Bard is going to settle, and they threw up the white flag in this statement to stockholders.”
  • Cook Medical IVC Filter Litigation is consolidated in MDL 2570 in US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. The defendants are Cook Medical, LLC and Cook Inc., both of Bloomington, IN, and William Cook Europe APS, Bjaeverskov, Denmark. “There are many stipulated dismissals where no motion to dismiss has been filed,” Ray says. “Generally when you see this, the company is settling cases, but doing so privately. Will there be a mass settlement? Probably. But I am 99% sure that they have already settled a lot of cases.”
  • Cordis IVC Filter Litigation is centered in the California state courts, where hundreds of cases are up for consolidation. Cordis Corporation is organized under the laws of Florida, with its principal place of business in Fremont, California. According to Ray, plaintiffs can file cases there regardless of the original jurisdiction.
  • There is no MDL for Boston Scientific Corp IVC Filter Litigation. “We believe it is possible that more cases will be filed and a motion for consolidation and transfer may be formed in an effort to form an MDL,” says Mass Tort Consultant John Ray.
  • Similarly, there is no MDL for cases against Rex Medical and Argon Medical. Plaintiffs have filed cases in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas before Judge Arnold New, who has assigned them to the complex litigation track.

How were defective devices approved?

Ray said he solved the puzzle about how a group of medical devices so inherently defective won approval from the FDA. “It was a matter of timing,” he says. The first IVC filters were on the market prior to regulation by the Medical Device Act of 1976. The first IVC filter was approved using the 510(k) shortcut. “Once the first device was approved, every other device had a predicate device. They were all approved without ever being tested, without proving their satefy, without proving their efficacy.”

IVC filters are small, cage-like devices that are inserted into the inferior vena cava – a major vein leading directly to the heart. They were supposed to capture blood clots and prevent them from reaching the lungs.

However, attorney John Dalimonte of Boston identified three issues with the Cook Tulip and Celect IVC Filters.

  • Migration downward and upward. The IVC Filters can tilt or shift, making them almost impossible to remove.
  • Device fracture, causing blood clots (embolism) in the heart, lung, liver and kidneys. Research shows that the devices experienced fracture rates of 37% to 40% after five and a half years.
  • Perforation, where stress on the IVC Filter struts leads to fractures that puncture adjacent organs and vessels.

“There are a lot of cases out there,” Dalimonte says, because the manufacturers conducted off-label marketing directly to bariatric patients, trauma patients and orthopedic surgery patients.

He will be part of the panel of the September Mass Tort Nexus Course. John serves on the Steering Committee for the Bard and Cook MDLs. Contact barbara@masstortnexus.com or (954) 383-3932 for information on the September Course.

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