Send Message Send Message
Cohen, Snyder, Eisenberg & Katzenberg, P.A. - Maryland Personal Injury Lawyers
We are open for business and may be reached by telephone or email. Our night & weekend number, 410-332-0045, is also available to speak to an attorney, as usual.

Department of Justice joins lawsuit over faulty medical devices

Medical device manufacturers are held to a high standard. The products they produce are expected to work properly. When their products are defective or fail, the results can be catastrophic to patients.

This week, the U.S. Department of Justice joined a civil lawsuit against Boston Scientific Corporation and Guidant, one of its subsidiaries, alleging the company wrongfully sold faulty medical devices to the Medicare program. The government is intervening in a previously filed suit by a patient who was implanted with a Guidant implantable defibrillator device in 2002.

Implantable defibrillators are battery-powered devices implanted in patients who are at risk for sudden death from heart problems. In the event a patient experiences a heart arrhythmia, or irregular heartbeat, the devices are designed to correct the arrhythmia by shocking the heart with a jolt of electricity. According to the lawsuits, Guidant knew as early as 2002 that its defibrillators might not deliver the jolts of electricity when needed, but it did not act quickly enough to correct the problem.

According to the government, the flawed defibrillators are responsible for 13 known deaths and possibly more. Guidant did not issue a recall of the defibrillators until 2005, nearly three years after it allegedly became aware of the problems with its defibrillators. Although Guidant eventually fixed the problems with its defibrillators, the company is accused of selling defective devices it still had in stock.

Recently, Guidant pleaded guilty to criminal charges for withholding information from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and failing to inform regulators of catastrophic failures in its devices. As a result of the guilty plea, Guidant was sentenced to three years of probation and was ordered to pay $296 million in penalties.


Minnesota Public Radio, "US sues Boston Scientific, alleging false claims by Guidant unit," Martin Moylan, 1/28/2011

The Wall Street Journal, "US Justice Department Files Civil Lawsuit Over Guidant Defibrillators," Brent Kendall, 1/27/2011

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • AABA
Email Us For A Response

How can we help you?

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Cohen, Snyder, Eisenberg & Katzenberg, P.A. - Maryland Personal Injury Lawyers

Cohen, Snyder, Eisenberg & Katzenberg, P.A.

347 N Charles St
Baltimore, MD 21201

Phone: 443-529-0795
Baltimore Law Office Map

153 W Patrick St
Suite A
Frederick, MD 21701

Phone: 443-529-0795
Frederick Law Office Map

112 W Pennsylvania Ave
Suite 302
Bel Air, MD 21014

Phone: 443-529-0795
Bel Air Law Office Map

7420 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd
Suite 2
Glen Burnie, MD 21061

Phone: 443-529-0795
Glen Burnie Law Office Map

1760 Eastern Blvd
Essex, MD 21221

Phone: 443-529-0795
Essex Law Office Map

1 Olympic Place
Suite 900
Towson, MD 21204

Phone: 443-529-0795
Map & Directions