NaturaLyte and GranuFlo Lawsuits Consolidated in Federal Court
The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) has ruled that pre-trial proceedings for all lawsuits related to dialysis injuries from GranuFlo and NaturaLyte will be consolidated in federal court. Judge Douglas P. Woodlock will preside over the docket at the Massachusetts district court. The announcement was made on March 29.
Individuals who have filed a GranuFlo lawsuit in New York, Illinois, Mississippi, California, New Jersey, and other states will see their cases centralized, after a motion from plaintiffs to create an MDL was filed in December of last year. The petition was accepted after the panel determined that cases shared sufficient factual similarities and would benefit from coordination.
After considering Mississippi and California among other states as possible locations for the MDL, Massachusetts was elected as the preferred venue, owing to the proximity of plaintiffs, witnesses and evidence, as well as the Fresenius Medical Care headquarters in Waltham.
The lawsuits allege the two dialysates, which are used to filter toxins out of the blood stream, can cause dangerously-elevated levels of bicarbonate. Such levels can result in cardiopulmonary arrest. Granuflo and NaturaLyte are both commonly used in hemodialysis, a procedure performed regularly on patients at dialysis treatment centers all over the U.S.
Defendants Fresenius Medical Care (FMC) describe themselves as ‘the world’s largest integrated provider of products and services for individuals undergoing dialysis because of chronic kidney failure.’ According to their website, FMC defines the ‘highest standards’ available for dialysis treatment.
The German company received FDA approval for the manufacture and marketing of Granuflo in 2003. As well as operating their own treatment centers, FMC is the leading supplier of dialysis machines and dialysates to other centers.
GranuFlo recall issued in 2012
The motion also made mention of the Class I GranuFlo recall mandated by the FDA in March of 2012. A Class I recall indicates a serious risk of adverse reactions including heart attacks and death. It does not require removal of dialysates from treatment centers, but does demand dosing protocols and stricter warning labels. The FDA stated that “Inappropriate prescription of these products can lead to a high serum bicarbonate level in patients undergoing hemodialysis.” The recall was prompted by an internal Fresenius memo from November 2011, in which the company noted that elevated levels of bicarbonate caused by dosing errors were a significant risk factor for heart attacks. Fresenius reported some 900 incidents of death related to their products, but only alerted clinics within their own network.
File a GranuFlo lawsuit in New York
Owing to the increased publicity surrounding the risk of heart attack and other health complications, more injured patients and family members who have lost loved ones after using Granuflo and NaturaLyte are coming forward to file lawsuits against Fresenius Medical Care. Patients allege they were not adequately warned about the dangers associated with the products.
If you’ve suffered a heart attack or stroke, or have lost a family member as a result of using these products, a NaturaLyte or Granuflo lawsuit in New York may help you recover significant monetary damages. NYC personal injury lawyers at The Sanders Firm offer decades of experience successfully litigating product liability claims against pharmaceutical manufacturers such as Fresenius Medical Care. Call us at 1-800-FAIR-PLAY for a free case evaluation.