Why Do IVC Filters Migrate?
Several teams of researchers have proposed that the likelihood of movement may be “built in” to new-generation IVC filters.
While older models were made of stainless steel or titanium, new retrievable IVC filters come in a type of cutting-edge alloys with “shape memory.” In colder temperatures, the filters become flexible. When heated, they return to their new shape. Thus fluctuations in body temperature can alter an IVC filter’s configuration, allowing it to detach from the vena cava and flow “upstream.”
Potential Complications Of Migration
In this 2009 report, cardiologists at Michigan’s William Beaumont Hospital described the case of a 54-year-old man whose retrievable IVC filter moved from below his kidneys to the heart. Eventually, the device accessed the patient’s right ventricle, one of the heart’s pumping chambers.You can also look for Bard IVC Filter Attorneys for IVC Filter Complications Lawsuits.
He suffered ventricular tachycardia, an abnormally rapid heart rate, and was finally diagnosed with non-Q-wave myocardial infarction, a less rigorous form of heart attack. A “percutaneous” solution, in which surgeons access internal organs through a single needle puncture, was proposed first but left when it became clear that the IVC filter’s struts had become “intertwined” with tissues of a heart valve.
Ultimately, open-heart surgery was successful in removing the migrated IVC filter.
Symptoms Of Migration
Reviewing important medical publications between 1998 and 2008, the researchers found that a majority of victims in whom migration had occurred experienced immediate symptoms, including:
fainting (or “syncope) and
abnormal heart rhythms.
Additionally, patients with migrated IVC filters were recognized at high risk for serious complications like ventricular arrhythmia (a common precursor to heart attack) and cardiac tamponade, a possibly fatal medical emergency in which blood escapes into the gap between the heart muscle and the organ’s outer layer.