Products Liability – Health equipment

Contact Lenses; Infection

The plaintiff's contact lenses were packaged in a solution that was contaminated with pseudomonas.   It caused an infection and scarring of the plaintiff's cornea. As a result of his now poor eyesight, the plaintiff fell, ruptured his spleen, and died.

Urinary Prosthesis

A 58-year-old man underwent a surgical procedure to correct his incontinence due to a prostate operation.   Because the surgery was unsuccessful, a urinary prosthesis was implanted to correct the incontinence. The device repeatedly failed and the patient underwent numerous surgical procedures for replacement of parts and of the entire device. He also suffered impotence

Packaging of Ligature Thread

A dentist, while opening a package of elastic ligature thread, suffered a severe laceration of his right thumb when the cutting utensil in the string dispenser flew out of the package.   The manufacturer did not warn of this danger and later discontinued the use of this package. The dentist is righthanded, and the injury

Cardiac Pacemaker

Plaintiff, a man in his early 60s, had been implanted with a pacemaker.   The device malfunctioned and increased his heartbeat to between 150 and 200 beats per minute (the average being 80-100 beats per minute). He was taken to the hospital for emergency treatment and surgery to regulate the heartbeat, but died soon after.

Anesthesia; Defective Air Hose Connector

During an operation, an unconscious, anesthetized patient required the administration of air. The anesthesiologist turned on the air from the wall supply and the "quick connect" coupling of the air machine to the wall air supply became disconnected under the pressure of the Air Hose Connector.   If the coupling had been a screw-type connector

Radiation Therapy Machine

An elderly woman was undergoing radiation therapy following a mastectomy.   When she was strapped to the stretcher assembly of the therapy machine and was being raised into position, the machine failed to shut off, and she was crushed between the stretcher assembly and the machine. It was found that the machine malfunctioned because of

Implant for Pain Prevention

The plaintiff had pain in her lower back and legs which her doctors were unwilling to continue to control by the administration of medication.   She therefore underwent the implantation in her spinal column of a device designed to generate an electrical current that was supposed to block the pain impulses and prevent her from

IUD; Another Example

The plaintiff, a woman in her 20s, was using an IUD as a form of birth control. After repeated complaints of pain and discomfort, her physicians diagnosed an ovarian cyst and recommended surgery.   During the operation, however, the surgeon discovered that an infection had spread to her fallopian tubes necessitating their removal. (Shortly afterwards


A former birth control pill user decided to switch to an IUD as a form of birth control after reading about potential dangers associated with the pill.   Her physician inserted an IUD and instructed her on its use. She experienced some bleeding and cramping after insertion. Two years later she developed more severe cramping


An intravenous catheter used in treating the plaintiff, then a hospital patient, broke off and fragmented, sending pieces through his bloodstream thereby endangering vital organs so that delicate emergency surgery had to be performed to correct the problem.

Blood Transfusion

The plaintiff was hospitalized for internal injuries received as a result of a fall in her home. As part of the hospital treatment she was given a blood transfusion. The blood was contaminated and the plaintiff developed a severe case of hepatitis with resultant permanent hepatic damage.[93]

Electronic Machine for Figure Control

Plaintiff used an electronic machine for figure control from May, 1959 through October, 1969. Because of her use of the machine, plaintiff was caused to develop multiple sclerosis affecting her nervous, muscular and optic systems.   The FDA subsequently took these units off the market, as dangerous to health. In January, 1971 the FDA sent

Massage Belt

A woman bought a massage belt unit to lose weight. She used the machine uneventfully for some months, and then she had to have the unit replaced by an identical unit because of a defect in the motor.   She used the replacement for over a year, when one day the belt strap which was


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