October 8, 2014: Southern District of Indiana Will House Cook Medical IVC Filters MDL Cases

In the matter of Cook Medical IVC Filters Products Liability Litigation, the Judicial Panel on Multi District Litigation (“JPML”) ruled in favor of centralization of plaintiffs’ cases into an MDL (Multi District Litigation). The litigation consists of 27 actions pending in eleven districts. Plaintiffs in 12 of 27 of IVC Filter suits against Cook Medical were centralized into an MDL, and transferred to the Southern District of Indiana.

Information On IVC Filters

IVC filters,or inferior vena cava filters, are inserted into the inferior vena cava (the main blood vessel that returns blood from the lower half of the body to the heart) to filter and prevent blood clots from reaching the lungs, where the clots can cause a pulmonary embolism (PE), or blockage in a lung artery. Since a PE can block blood flow to the lungs, it can be disabling or fatal. IVC filters are placed in patients at risk for PE when anticoagulant therapy cannot be used or is ineffective.

While these devices may be beneficial to most patients, in some cases the “cage-like” prongs of the IVC filter may puncture the wall of the vein in which it was placed, or migrate to puncture blood vessels and organs. Any of these occurrences could lead to internal bleeding, cardiac tamponade, deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, or death, according the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

To learn about other medical device recalls or pursuing a medical device lawsuit, visit Duodenoscope Infection Lawsuit and Mesh Lawsuit.

Decision for the MDL

In making this decision, the JPML found “that these 27 actions involve common questions of fact,” such as shared “factual issues arising from allegations that defects in the design of Cook’s inferior vena cava (“IVC”) filters makes them more likely to fracture, migrate, tilt, or perforate the inferior vena cava, causing injury.”

The JPML also maintained that centralizing the cases into an MDL in the Southern District of Indiana would be more convenient for involved all parties, and would “eliminate duplicative discovery, prevent inconsistent pretrial rulings, and conserve the resources of the parties, their counsel, and the judiciary.”


If you are a loved one has been injured in relation to Cook Medical IVC filters, and you have a question concerning an IVC filter lawsuit, please call The Weinberg Law Firm toll free at 1-877-934-6274 for a free legal case evaluation. You can also contact our firm online by submitting the easy-to-use “Free Legal Case Evaluation Form” found on this page. To learn more about our legal services related to pulmonary embolisms, please see the Personal Injury Lawyers of the Weinberg Law Firm.

Cook’s Argument Against the MDL

Cook Medical opposed this decision; the IVC maker argued that the actions did not include enough common facts to warrant consolidating the cases into one MDL. According to the Transfer Order, Cook appealed to the fact that “these actions involve different models of Cook Medical IVC filters and allege different injuries”.

The JPML denied these arguments; in responding, in part, to these arguments, the panel responded that many of these objections had been addressed in past decisions.


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