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Philips CPAP Lawsuits

Philips Respironics has recalled millions of units of its continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), bi-level positive airway pressure (BiPAP), and mechanical ventilator because of possible carcinogenic and toxic effects of a foam used in the devices that can escape as a gas or particulates and be inhaled or ingested by CPAP users and cause cancer, respiratory issues, or other significant health issues. In testing, Philips discovered that the polyester-based polyurethane (PE-PUR) foam it had used to dampen the sound of the devices can degrade into particles that can be in ingested or inhaled by the user. Ingesting or inhaling these particles is linked to:

  • Carcinogenic effects
  • Toxic effects
  • Respiratory issues
  • Chemical exposure risk

Trustwell Law is accepting cases on behalf of people who used Philips CPAP, BiPAP, or mechanical ventilators and developed cancer or a serious health issue.

Cancers:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Brain cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Hematopoietic (blood) cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Liver cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Lymphatic cancer
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Nasal cancer
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Papillary carcinoma
  • Prostate cancer
  • Rectal cancer
  • Stomach cancer
  • Testicular cancer
  • Thyroid cancer

Other Serious Health Issues include:

  • Acute respiratory distress system (ARDS)
  • Chemical poisoning
  • Kidney/renal damage
  • Kidney/renal disease
  • Lung/pulmonary damage
  • Lung/pulmonary disease
  • Liver damage
  • Liver disease
  • Pleural effusion
  • Reactive airway disease (RAD)
  • Respiratory failure
  • Severe ear inflammation
  • Severe nose inflammation
  • Severe throat inflammation

If you or a loved one developed cancer or a serious health issue after using a Philips CPAP, BiPAP, or mechanical ventilator and are considering filing a CPAP lawsuit, call us at 202-914-1454 or submit your case details online and someone will contact you shortly. You pay nothing unless your lawsuit is successful and you receive compensation.

At Trustwell Law, our experienced attorneys take a personalized, compassionate approach. We cut through the legalese and partner with our clients. We have access to the expertise, resources, and manpower to fully investigate each case and fight for and with our clients to get the justice they deserve.

Carcinogenic Polyurethane Foam in Philips CPAP

Philips recalled their CPAPs because the machines contain polyurethane foam, which can degrade in the machine and then escape to be ingested or inhaled by the CPAP user. The American Cancer Society lists urethane as a probable human carcinogen based on determinations by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (“probably carcinogenic” in humans) and the National Toxicology Program (“reasonably anticipated” to cause cancer in humans). There is evidence that urethane exposure causes lung, liver, blood, and other cancers in animals.

Polyurethane is created by reacting the chemicals methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) and toluene diisocyanate (TDI) with polyols (naturally occurring sugar alcohols). Both MDI and TDI must be handled very carefully, and TDI is a suspected carcinogen classified as very toxic. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recommends that workers avoid exposure to TDI.

As a foam, polyester-based polyurethane (PE-PUR) is considered safe. But the chemicals the foam gives off— as a gas or tiny particle—are dangerous to ingest or breathe. That is why Philips initiated the recall when they discovered that their CPAPs, BiPAPs, and ventilators could off-gas those chemicals and expose the CPAP users.

When the particulate foam is inhaled, it can cause difficulty breathing and even respiratory failure. Furthermore, if bacteria or fungus are breathed in with the foam, it can cause infection in the respiratory tract and lungs. In terms of off-gassing, breathing in isocyanates and other gases associated with polyurethane can cause lung irritation, and these chemicals are carcinogenic, which is why cancer is a concern.

Philips Recalls Millions of CPAP, BiPAP, and Mechanical Ventilators

In June 2021, Philips recalled millions of CPAP, BiPAP, and mechanical ventilators. In its announcement, Philips explained that testing had shown the polyester-based polyurethane (PE-PUR) foam used as a noise dampener in the recalled devices could present a risk to the users.

Philips’ announcement explained that the PE-PUR foam could degrade into tiny particles that could enter the device’s air pathway and be ingested or inhaled and that the foam could give off gases from certain chemicals. Philips further explained that using unapproved methods to clean the machines could make the foam degrade more quickly and that operating the machines in high-heat and high-humidity environments could also contribute to the foam degrading.

Philips listed the known risks from particulate exposure due to PE-PUR foam degradation as:

  • Headache
  • Irritation
  • Inflammation
  • Respiratory issues
  • Possible “toxic and carcinogenic effects”

Philips reported the known risks of off-gassing include:

  • Headache
  • Irritation
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Possible “toxic and carcinogenic effects”

Philips Recall: Affected Products and Recommendations

Affected devices, all serial numbers and all manufactured before April 26, 2021

  • Continuous Ventilator, Minimum Ventilatory Support, Facility Use
    • E30 (Emergency Use Authorization)
  • Continuous Ventilator, Non-life Supporting
    • DreamStation ASV
    • DreamStation ST, AVAPS
    • SystemOne, ASV4
    • C-Series ASV
    • C-Series S/T and AVAPS
    • OmniLab Advanced+
  • Noncontinuous Ventilator
    • SystemOne (Q-Series)
    • DreamStation
    • DreamStation Go
    • Dorma 400
    • Dorma 500
    • REMstar SE Auto

Affected devices, all serial numbers and all manufactured before April 26, 2021

  • Continuous Ventilator
    • Trilogy 100
    • Trilogy 200
    • Garbin Plus, Aeris, LifeVent
  • Continuous Ventilator, Minimum Ventilatory Support, Facility Use
    • A-Series BiPAP Hybrid A30 (not marketed in US)
    • A-Series BiPAP V30 Auto
  • Continuous Ventilator, Non-life Supporting
    • A-Series BiPAP A40
    • A-Series BiPAP A30

Philips’ announcement included recommendations for patients using these devices, directly quoted here:

The recall notification (U.S. only) / field safety notice (International Markets) advises patients and customers to take the following actions:

For patients using life-sustaining mechanical ventilator devices:

      • Do not stop or alter your prescribed therapy until you have talked to your physician. Philips recognizes that alternate ventilator options for therapy may not exist or may be severely limited for patients who require a ventilator for life-sustaining therapy, or in cases where therapy disruption is unacceptable. In these situations, and at the discretion of the treating clinical team, the benefit of continued usage of these ventilator devices may outweigh the risks.
      • If your physician determines that you must continue using this device, use an inline bacterial filter. Consult your Instructions for Use for guidance on installation.

For patients using Bi-Level PAP and CPAP devices:

      • Discontinue use of your device and work with your physician or Durable Medical Equipment (DME) provider to determine the most appropriate options for continued treatment.

What Are CPAP, BiPAP, and Mechanical Ventilators For?

Mechanical ventilators help patients breathe. They act like bellows—moving air into and out of the lungs. A patient on a mechanical ventilator may have a fitted mask or a breathing tube that goes into their lungs.

A mechanical ventilator sometimes provides short-term breathing support, for example during an operation, or when a patient has a critical illness, or when patients with significant problems breathing are transported by ambulance or helicopter. Mechanical ventilators may be needed for long-term use when patients have a chronic illness that makes breathing difficult.

Ventilators may be used to:

  • Deliver high concentrations of oxygen to the lungs.
  • Help remove carbon dioxide from the body.
  • Make breathing easier, so more of the body’s energy goes towards healing and recovery.
  • Breathe for a person who is not breathing because of a brain or spinal cord injury, or whose muscles are weak and compromised.
  • Breathe for an unconscious patient.

CPAP (which stands for continuous positive airway pressure) and BiPAP machines are commonly used to treat sleep apnea, a condition in which a person repeatedly starts and stops breathing during sleep. These machines do not include a breathing tube, and so may also be used to provide noninvasive breathing support for hospitalized patients in respiratory distress who do not want to be on a ventilator, or patients with neuromuscular weakness, such as those with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Philips CPAP, BiPAP, and Mechanical Ventilator Attorneys

Do you want to consult with an attorney because you or a loved one used one of the recalled Philips CPAP, BiPAP, or mechanical ventilator devices are now experiencing significant related health issues, including cancer? Contact us for a free consultation. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

 

Sources

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