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Defective medical devices: malfunction or malpractice?

The advanced medical devices of this day and age are essential for some people. Devices like pacemakers and metal hips can significantly reduce both pain and risk for many individuals.

It is extremely serious if these products defect or glitch. A malfunctioning medical device could put your life in danger and do even more damage than it was meant to fix. It is costly to correct these defects, both physically and financially.

There are options to obtain compensation. However, the main question to answer is what went wrong? Was it the product itself or the surgical procedure?

Does the problem lie in the product or the practice?

When it comes to defective medical devices, there are two potential claims you could pursue. These different claims entirely depend on your situation.

Based on your individual circumstances, you could claim:

  • Product liability: Claims of defective products usually involve issues with the manufacturing or marketing of a product. Many times, if manufacturers recognize a defect they will recall the device. This usually means full correction and compensation for damages caused. If there is no recall and you can prove damages were caused by a defect, you may have a claim to pursue. 
  • Medical malpractice: Negligence is the main factor of any medical malpractice claims. All health professionals have a duty to keep you safe. If they do not exercise proper care while implanting a medical device, it is a breach of that duty. 

Could you pursue both claims?

The overlap of product liability and medical malpractice is rare, but possible. A medical professional could potentially fall below the standard of care while implanting a defective device.

This again depends entirely on your situation. If you can prove both negligence and malfunction, then you could move forward with a combined claim. However, these cases are already complex separately, and combined they could be even more so. An experienced attorney could provide valuable guidance through whatever personal injury claim you decide to pursue. 

Providing proof

Evidence is the most important element to prove both product liability and medical malpractice claims. Generally, both manufacturers and hospitals have extensive legal protections in place that can make these kinds of cases difficult. 

However, if you can provide clear evidence of injury, negligence and malfunction then you may have a case. It is important to keep thorough records of your medical care and recovery to supplement your claim.

You entrust your life to medical professionals and devices. If that trust is breached, you have options to get the compensation you deserve. 

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