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September 26, 2023 News

Berger Montague Shareholder Shanon J. Carson and Senior Counsel Jennifer P. Elwell Appointed to Leadership Positions in the Bard Implanted Port Catheter MDL Litigation

PHILADELPHIA, PA / September 26, 2023 / The national plaintiffs’ law firm Berger Montague is pleased to announce that firm attorneys Shanon J. Carson and Jennifer P. Elwell have been appointed by the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona to leadership positions in In re: Bard Implanted Port Catheter Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 3081. The court appointed Mr. Carson to the Plaintiffs’ Executive Committee and Ms. Elwell to the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee.

In August 2023, all lawsuits filed in federal courts nationwide alleging injuries caused by Bard implanted port catheters were consolidated before one federal court located in Phoenix, Arizona for discovery and pretrial proceedings. The defendants in these cases include C.R. Bard, Inc., Bard Access Systems, Inc., and Becton, Dickinson & Co. On September 19, 2023, the court began the case by issuing an order appointing the plaintiffs’ leadership team.

The consolidated lawsuits involve personal injuries arising from Bard’s alleged defective design, manufacture, and sale of implantable port catheter devices, including the Bard PowerPort® and other similar devices. The port catheter devices are an implantable vascular access device intended to provide repeated access to the vascular system for the delivery of medication including but not limited to chemotherapy, intravenous fluids, parenteral nutrition solutions, blood products, and for the withdrawal of blood samples.

Bard port catheters are surgically placed under the skin, typically in the chest, and consist of an injection port and a catheter. The injection port has a raised center where the needle is inserted. The plaintiffs allege that the devices are defective and prone to fracture and migration, and that they cause the collection of: (a) fibrinous blood products, thereby increasing the risk of thromboembolism; and (b) microbes and/or fungi, thereby increasing the risk of infection and sepsis. The plaintiffs allege that the device presents an unreasonable risk of life-threatening injuries such as hemorrhage, thromboembolism, serious infection and other injuries from infection such as sepsis, limb loss, organ failure or death, cardiac arrhythmia, severe and persistent pain, and perforations of tissue, vessels, and organs, as well as the need for surgeries to remove the defective device or fragments that fractured, resulting in pieces of the catheter becoming embedded in an artery, vein, or organ, and causing additional complications. It is also alleged that if a catheter dislodges from a chemo port, the medicine may pool beneath the skin, allowing tissue necrosis to occur.

The cases were consolidated because, as the court explained, all the cases “can be expected to share factual questions arising from allegations that defendants manufacture the catheter component of their port devices with a concentration of barium sulfate that is too high, which reduces the material integrity of the catheter” and causes serious injuries including catheter infection, fracture, and thrombosis. Over 50 lawsuits have already been filed and it is expected that thousands of additional lawsuits will be filed.

Berger Montague has been contacted by hundreds of individuals alleging injuries by Bard port catheters as well as from similar devices manufactured by other companies. “We are honored to represent our clients and we look forward to obtaining justice for them,” said Shanon Carson, Executive Shareholder of Berger Montague. “If any person has been injured by a Bard port catheter device, they should contact us for further information, and we also encourage any person who has relevant information concerning the lawsuit to call us as well. We expect this litigation to move swiftly.”

Please direct all inquiries to Berger Montague’s Bard Port Catheter Litigation Team by email to [email protected] or by telephone at (215) 875-3072. Additional information is available at: 

Berger Montague PC is a national law firm headquartered in Philadelphia with offices in Chicago, Minneapolis, San Diego, Toronto, Washington, D.C., and Wilmington. Berger Montague litigates complex civil cases on behalf of plaintiffs in federal and state courts throughout the country. Berger Montague has played lead roles in major cases for over 53 years and has recovered more than $50 billion for its clients and the classes they have represented.

Please Contact:

Shanon J. Carson, Executive Shareholder

Jennifer P. Elwell, Senior Counsel

Berger Montague PC

Telephone: (215) 875-3072 Email: [email protected]

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