Minneapolis based Medtronic earlier this agreed to settle a lawsuit over their Infuse Bone Graft for $85 million dollars. The suit was brought about by investors who owned Medtronic shares between November 20, 2006 and November 17, 2008. The suit was filed because of the company making misleading statements concerning Infuse, which is a genetically engineered bone graft used in spinal surgery that has been heavily used off label, meaning not what it had been approved for by the FDA.
Infuse is a synthetic form of bone morphogenetic protein, also called BMP. Ideally, the Infuse Bone Graft fills in gaps between a person’s vertebrae in order to replace disks that have been damaged. However, it has been heavily used off label and has caused people serious problems and has even led to death. The product is approved for use in a section of the lower spine but many physicians are using the this device in the neck or cervical area of the spinal chord and as a result, complications are arising. Nearly 300 reports have been filed in regards to side effects associated with Infuse. You can count on the number of Medtronic bone graft lawsuits rising in the near future.
Some of the Medtronic bone graft side effects include swelling of the neck, difficulty breathing, difficulty speaking and swallowing, airway compression, nerve damage and even death. These are incredibly scary side effects that are extremely serious. If you or a family member has had these kind of issues related to the Medtronic Infuse bone graft, speak to a lawyer familiar with these suits who can give you advice on your legal options. Medtronic generated over $800 million off Infuse in 2011, with over 85% coming from off label use. They have even admitted to paying a physician $800,000 to falsify study results for the Infuse bone graft. Once again, another company putting profits over the safety of people.