In Janurary 2011 I had ACDF surgery (Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion). The surgeon implanted a medical device in my neck (c-spine). All was well until July. I had unusual severe pain in that area. X-rays showed the titanium plate within the device cracked. The doctor said it was the first time he ever saw that happen. I went for a second opinion and got the same answer.
I'm still in severe pain and I know it's the cracked plate portion of the device that's causing problems. I want it taken out. Can I file suit against the manufacturer even if I'm the first and only case of this? Can't it just be a defective product? Thanks.
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ANSWER for "Defective Titanium Medical Device...":
You certainly have a substantial claim against the manufacturer of the device, and possibly the surgeon or surgeons who performed the surgery implanting the device.
Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a surgical procedure to treat nerve root or spinal cord compression by decompressing the spinal cord and nerve roots of the cervical spine in order to stabilize the corresponding vertebrae. This procedure is used when other non-surgical treatments have failed. The procedure is serious and requires surgical technical expertise.
Find a Board Certified Surgeon who has substantial expertise in anterior cervical discectomy and fusion. Visit with her and request an examination. You don’t have to make any reference to the possibility of litigation. That’s the first way to scare off a doctor. We do though urge you to be entirely truthful in answering any questions the doctor asks.
Next, see a second Board Certified Surgeon and go through the same routine. You are going to need to document the fracture to the titanium plate. Don’t hesitate to have whatever medical treatment you need to correct the damage. Although you seem to have an excellent medical malpractice and product liability case, hesitating to seek immediate medical care would be inappropriate and dangerous.
There are some personal injury cases which can be pursued without the help of a Personal Injury / Product Liability Attorney. This is not one of them.
Make an appointment to see several Attorneys at your earliest convenience. Their advice is crucial, especially at this point in the case. Most will not charge any fee for an initial office consultation. If you decide to retain one you will not have to pay any legal fees or costs to pursue the case until the case is settled or successfully litigated.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
The accuracy of information provided on this site is not guaranteed. It is generic information for informal purposes only. It is NOT formal legal advice. Your use of this site does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. Before relying on any information found in this site you should consult with a licensed attorney in your state. If you are currently represented by an attorney, you should strictly abide by his/her counsel.