Millions of Americans undergo kidney dialysis, or hemodialysis, every day. While the procedure may be time consuming; it is generally thought to be safe. Until now. GranuFlo and NaturaLyte, two dialysate chemical solutions used in thousands of kidney dialysis centers, have been linked to metabolic alkalosis – a condition associated with low blood pressure, cardiac arrhythmia, heart attack, cardiac arrest and other cardiovascular problems. Nearly 1,000 incidents of cardiac arrests may be linked to these chemicals and the lawsuits filed against the manufacture are piling up.
GranuFlo & NaturaLyte Lawsuits Allege Failure To Warn About Known Risks
Numerous lawsuits have been filed against Fresenius Medical Care, the manufacturer of GranuFlo and NaturaLyte, alleging that these acid concentrate products can cause a rapid and unsafe elevation of bicarbonate in the body and create an increased risk of cardiopulmonary arrest and death. They also allege that the company knew about the increased risk, but failed to warn consumers.
Proof That Fresenius Knew About Dangers
In November of 2011, a Fresenius internal company memo warned about the risks associated with dialysis and the use of GranuFlo and NaturaLyte products and revealed that 941 dialysis patients at 667 of its clinics suffered cardiac arrest during dialysis treatments in 2010. The company advised their own doctors and clinics about monitoring pre-dialysis bicarbonate levels and adjusting dialysate to reduce the risk of heart attacks and death. However, it did not provide the same warning to other clinics who purchase GranuFlo and NaturaLyte from them.
A subsequent U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) inquiry in March 2012 resulted in a Class 1 recall (the most serious recall the FDA can issue) and forced Fresenius to send out a warning letter to other dialysis centers which used GranuFlo and NaturaLyte. In May of 2012, the FDA issued its own warning letter to the medical community about the increased risks associated with using these drugs.
Product Liability Lawsuits Result in MDL Motion
So many product liability lawsuits have been filed against Fresenius in the past few months that a motion was filed on December 12, 2012 with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) requesting that all NaturaLyte and GranuFlo lawsuits filed in U.S. District Courts be consolidated in the District of Massachusetts. Consolidating cases in an MDL allows a court to look at the facts and circumstances around numerous cases that have similar claims and injuries.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to GranuFlo or NaturaLyte, contact The Driscoll Firm, LLC, to discuss your situation confidentially, determine your options and decide whether pursuing legal action against the company makes sense for you.