FDA Warns of Problems with IVC Blood Clot Filters

FDA Warns of Problems with IVC Blood Clot Filters

After receiving more than 900 reports of problems with IVC filters over the last five years, federal regulators are warning doctors to remove the filters, which are meant to prevent pulmonary embolisms, before they can break free inside the patient and do damage.

The FDA issued a safety alert this week for inferior vena cava (IVC) filters. The IVC filters are placed inside patients to prevent blood clots from breaking free and traveling to the lungs or heart and causing a pulmonary embolism. However, the FDA is telling doctors they should remove the filters once the danger of the clot has passed, or else the filters could break free and travel through the body of the patient.

The FDA warning notes that the agency has received 921 adverse event reports involving problems with IVC filters implanted. Of those, 328 involved the filter breaking free and migrating through the body, 146 involved components breaking loose, 70 involved the IVC being perforated and 56 reports were of the filters fracturing.


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