Archive for the ‘warming blanket’ tag

Inventor Says Warming Blanket Needs Recalled due to Infection Risk

September 3rd, 2015 at 12:02 pm

infection risk, Westport Medical Malpractice AttorneyIn 1988, a new product was introduced for both patients who undergo surgery, as well as victims of hypothermia. That product was the 3M Bair Hugger warming blanket.

When a patient is placed under anesthesia, his or her body temperature drops and it can interfere with both bleeding and recovery time. The warming blanket helps maintain a patient’s body temperature to avoid those complications. However, the blanket is also responsible for thousands of patients developing life-risking infections.

The Bair Hugger works similar to a forced-air furnace by carrying warm air through a hose which is connected to a blanket that is placed over a patient. However, the inventor of the blanket has spent the past several years notifying hospitals and other organizations that this product is dangerous.

According to the product’s inventor, Dr. Augustine, the danger from using the blanket occurs when the air that is being circulated through the blanket becomes recirculated. This recirculated air is then directed back and circulates throughout the operating room—including under the surgical table. Bacteria is found in this recirculated air and it often ends up inside patients’ surgical incisions—which can cause dangerous infections such as sepsis and Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). These infections have proven to be difficult to treat.

When Dr. Augustine realized the danger of the Bair Hugger blanket, he invented another device, which also warms a patient, but does so without contaminating the operational theater. Critics of  Augustine argue that he is only claiming the product is dangerous because he no longer has a financial stake in the product—but he could make a substantial profit with his new invention in the event of a Bair Hugger recall and replacement product need.

However, there has been a significant increase in the number of lawsuits filed on behalf of patients who developed post-surgical infections and complications which were caused by the Bair Hugger. At particular risk are patients who have undergone hip and knee replacements

If you suffered complications or infections after undergoing surgery, contact an experienced Westport medical malpractice attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have for your pain and loss.


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