Austin GranuFlow Litigation Attorney in Texas
GranuFlo is the brand name of a dialysate manufactured and used by Fresenius Medical Care, a company that provides kidney dialysis products and services at thousands of dialysis centers nationwide. Like other dialysates, GranuFlo works during the dialysis process to help clean waste products out of the bloodstream. Unlike many other dialysates, however, GranuFlo has become the center of dozens of lawsuits due to concerns that its use causes severe and even deadly side effects in some patients.
For patients who have kidney failure or reduced kidney function, dialysis is a lifesaver. The treatment uses a filtering machine called a “dialyzer” to combine the patient’s blood with a dialysate, which removes waste products. The clean blood then returns to the body.
GranuFlo differs from many dialysates in use because it uses sodium diacetate rather than sodium acetate. This difference in composition means that in some patients, higher levels of bicarbonates build up in the bloodstream. Bicarbonate levels have been linked to a number of serious cardiac events, including low blood pressure, cardiac arrhythmia, and heart attack. Elevated bicarbonate levels can also lead to a condition known as metabolic alkalosis, which can cause serious harm.
In 2012, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Class I recall of GranuFlo, along with another Fresenius dialysate, NaturaLyte. The recall noted that GranuFlo could cause low blood pressure and cardiac arrhythmia in some patients, particularly if it interacts badly with the medications they already take. The recall sought to revise the prescribing instructions for both products.
Further investigation revealed that Fresenius may have been aware of the problem and that the company failed to take steps to warn health care providers or patients of the risks. A 2011 company memo noted that over 900 patients had had heart attacks in Fresenius facilities in the preceding year, and that patients with increased bicarbonate levels – a potential side effect of mixing GranuFlo with certain popular medications – increased the risk of a heart attack up to six times.
While lawsuits concerning the use of GranuFlo continue to proceed in state and federal courts, hundreds of patients and their families have already suffered serious harm.
Side effects of GranuFlo include, but are not limited to:
- Cardiopulmonary arrest
- Heart attack
- Cardiac arrest
- Low blood pressure
- Metabolic alkalosis
- Hypokalemia (dangerously low potassium)
- Hypercapnia (dangerously high carbon dioxide in the blood)
- Cardiac arrhythmia, irregular heart beat
We are now accepting GranuFlo induced injury cases. If you or someone close to you experienced any of these symptoms as a result of taking GranuFlo, then you may have a GranuFlow lawsuit and could be entitled to financial compensation for you pain and suffering. Call us today for a free consultation at 512-499-8900.