An Indiana Bair Hugger lawsuit may be an option for patients who developed severe infections after having a surgical procedure with a Bair Hugger warming blanket. Every year millions of Americans undergo surgical procedures for a wide range of reasons. In the operating room, numerous devices are used to keep patients safe and to ensure that the procedure goes smoothly, however, some devices have been allegedly linked to severe complications, including an increased risk of infection. Affected patients and their families may be able to file a lawsuit and pursue compensation with the help of an Indiana Bair Hugger lawsuit attorney.
For more information, contact Attorney Group for Indiana. We offer free, confidential, no obligation consultations. We can help answer your questions, and if you choose to pursue a case we can connect you with an affiliated Indiana Bair Hugger lawsuit attorney who can assist you throughout the legal process.
What Is the Bair Hugger Device?
The Bair Hugger warming blanket is manufactured and distributed by the 3M Corporation. According to 3M, the device is used to warm patients during surgery to keep their body temperature from dropping to dangerous levels, which could lead to infection. The device works by forcing air that has been heated in a warming unit into a blanket filled with tubes. The blanket is draped over the patient’s body and the warmed air consistently regulates body temperature.
Infection Control Today cites forced air warming as one of the best ways to prevent common surgical complications associated with unintended hypothermia. According to ICT, when a patient’s core temperature dips below 96.8 degrees Fahrenheit, he or she is at a greater risk for developing an infection at the surgical site. This can cause vasorestriction to occur, which decreases the amount of oxygen present in the tissues, lowering the body’s ability to fight off potential infection.
Warming Blanket Risks
Concerns have been raised over whether Bair Hugger warming blankets could be circulating more than just warmed air onto the bodies of surgical patients. An Outpatient Surgery Magazine article cites claims that the blowers used to heat and pump the air into the blanket could also be heating the germs found on the floor of surgical rooms, then pumping them into the blankets. Bair Hugger blankets are often placed directly on exposed skin and surgical sites, leaving those areas open to contamination by infection-causing bacteria. If contaminated air is deposited on the area recently operated on, there is a possibility that infection could occur, leading to the need for future surgery or even amputation.
According to an article in the New York Times, the inventor of the Bair Hugger forced air warming system is one of the loudest voices of warning against the use of the device. The anesthesiologist came up with the idea for the warming blanket nearly two decades ago before selling it to 3M. However, he now believes that his invention could be harmful to patients by spreading bacteria such as antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus. He also claims that 3M was aware of the risk of contamination prior to purchasing the device, yet has failed to provide warnings to hospitals and medical personnel.
Bair Hugger Lawsuit Claims
There are currently over 50 lawsuits filed against 3M, all of which allege that the Bair Hugger warming blanket caused serious infections when used before, during or after a surgery. A Louisiana woman is one of those who claim the device caused harm. She underwent multiple knee surgeries over the course of several years, and the Bair Hugger device was used during each procedure. She alleges that she sustained serious permanent injures due to an infection that was caused by contaminated air being recirculated through the blanket onto her surgical site.
3M faces allegations of fraud, neglect and breach of express and implied warranty in this case and many others with similar claims. The company denies these allegations, claiming their product is completely safe to use.
How an Indiana Bair Hugger Lawsuit Can Help
Medical device makers have a duty to provide safe products. If there are risks of harm associated with their products, they also must provide adequate warnings. If a medical device maker fails to fulfill this duty, it could be held liable in lawsuits for injuries that may result.
People injured by Bair Hugger warming blankets may be eligible to recover money for:
- Medical Expenses
- Lost Wages
- Pain and Suffering
The families of those who have died may be eligible to recover money for funeral expenses and the pain that comes with losing a loved one.
The Time You Have to File a Claim is Limited. Contact Us Today.
For more information, contact Attorney Group for Indiana. You can fill out the form on this page or contact us by phone or email.
After you contact us, an attorney will follow up to answer questions that you might have. There is no cost or obligation to speak with us, and any information you provide will be kept confidential.
Please note that the law limits the time you have to pursue a claim or file a lawsuit for an injury. If you think you have a case, you should not delay taking action.