INFORMATION AND WHAT TO DO
The Medtronic defibrillator is an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) that’s used for heart irregularities such as tachycardia (fast heartbeat) or other arrhythmias. The device monitors the heartbeat 24/7 and sends signals to correct irregularities. When the heart doesn’t react to the signals, the ICD sends a shock to normalize the heart rate. The other type of Medtronic Defibrillator is a device used for Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Defibrillator (CRT-D). It is a device that works as a normal pacemaker, while also delivering small electrical pulses to the heart ventricles to make them contract at the same time. The CRT-D treats both abnormally slow and fast heart rates.
ICDs are Commonly Recommended for Those who have:
Survived a heart attack
- Brugada Syndrome (is a condition that leads to slower heartbeat in the ventricles)
Long QT Syndrome (when the ventricles take too long to contract and release)
- Survived a cardiac arrest
A congenital heart disease or other underlying conditions that may cause cardiac arrest
How is the ICD Implanted?
The ICD Medtronic Defibrillator is most commonly implanted just below the collarbone. The procedure is minimally invasive, using just a 4 inch incision. Surgeons will then send one or two leads through the veins of the heart and connect them to the defibrillator, then close the incision.
CRT-Ds are Commonly Recommended for those who:
- Are at high risk for sudden cardiac death
- Have ventricular dyssynchrony (ventricles are out of sync)
- Are at maximum dosage for heart medication, but symptoms are not being treated
- Have heart failure classified as Class 3 or Class 4
How is the CRT-D Implanted?
The CRT-D is usually implanted just under the collar bone. Three leads will be guided through the heart and connected to the Defibrillator. One will go through the right atrium, one through the right ventricle, and the third will be guided through the coronary sinus vein. After the three leads are connected to the CRT-D, the incision will be closed and the procedure is finished.
Risks Associated with Implants
- Irritation of the heart tissues and/or nerves
- Abrasion of the skin near the device
- Migration of the device or leads
- Unnecessary shocks occurring
What’s Wrong with the Medtronic Defibrillators?
Many of the Medtronic Defibrillators, both ICDs and CRT-Ds were found to have a manufacturing defect that prevented the devices from delivering the shock necessary to reset the heart rate back to normal rhythm. A technological security vulnerability has also been found in the defibrillators, allowing hackers within radio range manipulate the ICDs and CRT-Ds.
Statistics on Medtronic Defibrillators
Units nationwide were recalled for manufacturing errors
Different device models from Medtronic can be affected by the cyber threat
Defibrillators are affected by the security flaw
In 2018, the FDA released Class 1 recall was on the ICDs and CRT-Ds for manufacturing errors (from 2013-2017)
The Department of Homeland Security classified the hacking threat as a 9.3 severity (out of 10)
Have You Been Affected by a Medtronic Defibrillator?
Have you or a loved one been negatively affected after receiving an ICD or CRT-D Medtronic implant? We can help. Whether you’re a victim of a manufacturing flaw or a cyber security flaw, Murphy Law Firm has an experienced team of lawyers best suited to help you. In addition to getting you the compensation you deserve, our lawyers can also connect you with the doctors and specialists you may need. Call Murphy Law Firm at (225) 928-8800 or come in today for your free consultation.