CPAP and Sleep Apnea Machine Injury Lawyers Serving New Jersey

Dangers of Phillips CPAP & Sleep Apnea Machines

Many people who suffer from sleep apnea used a device from Philips Respironics, and instead of it helping them sleep better, it caused cancer in many users. There’s nothing more frustrating than putting your trust in a medical device and a company that claims it can help you, only to have it injure you instead.

If you were injured as a result of the Phillips sleep apnea machine, we want to help. Judd Shaw Injury Law™ has a team of attorneys to fight on your behalf. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

The Issue With Phillips CPAP And Sleep Apnea Machines

Philips recalled millions of CPAP and other sleep apnea machines because many users were breathing toxic foam caused by a defect with their machines. Ingesting this toxic foam can cause cancer and other major health problems. Aside from causing cancer, many users also reported headaches, upper airway irritations, coughing, chest pressure, sinus infections, asthma, damage to their liver and kidneys, nausea, vomiting, and increased breathing problems.

Class Action Lawsuit

In June 2021, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Philips in Massachusetts. The lawsuit claims that Phillips knew about the toxic foam and the severe health issues it was causing people for years. There are claims that users had been complaining about the issues for many years, but Philips didn’t issue a public warning until April 2021. It was another two months, June 14th, 2021, before Philips recalled the devices. Interestingly, Philips didn’t announce the recall of their machines until right around the time that they were coming out with a newer device. Many patients who desperately need these devices had no choice but to purchase the newer machine, meaning Philips continued to profit even after they made the recall of their current machine public.

Philips Lawsuits Are Based On 2 Violations:

  1. Design Defect
    One of the reasons people were filing lawsuits against Philips is for the simple fact that the devices they sold to patients were defective and dangerous. The foam they used in the device is so toxic that when it degrades it can cause cancer.
  2. Failure To Warn
    Not only did Philips use materials in their medical devices that were incredibly dangerous, but they failed to warn the public as soon as they became aware of the risks. There are allegations that users had been complaining of health issues as a result of the foam for years. At the very least, Philips became aware of the issue in April 2021 and didn’t issue a recall until the middle of June 2021. This means that people continued to buy and use the machines for at least two months, despite the fact that Philips knew the risks.

How Sleep Apnea and CPAP Machines Can Harm You

For many people, an unconscious sigh is a regular part of their day as they deal with children, spouses, and difficult coworkers. Whether we sigh out of frustration or not, unintentional deep breaths are a common part of life. Sighs accomplish several key purposes in normal human physiology. Among the most crucial is to help the lungs expand to receive adequate oxygen.

While we sleep, the bodily action of a sigh can happen because the upper airway can close and prevent proper breathing. A sleep partner will often notice this problem, hearing the sleeper making sounds similar to choking, gasping, or simply not breathing for an unusually drawn-out period of time.

Finally, the sleeping person will wake up for a moment, make an action very similar to a large sigh, and then return to sleep. This can happen many times throughout the night while the sleeping person is unaware.

A CPAP or another sleep apnea machine can significantly help counter this danger. However, suppose the machine does not function correctly or is poorly manufactured. In that case, it can cause serious health problems because it is directly connected to a person’s breathing and the oxygen that enters the lungs.

The heat and humidity common to bodily breathing can cause compounds used in the manufacturing of these machines to deteriorate slowly. Cleaning products can also interact destructively with the machine and cause deterioration. Thus, small pieces and particles of the machine can be inhaled by the user.

Initially, the deterioration may be unobservable to the naked eye because the pieces and particles are very small. Over time though, the degradation accumulates and can be perceivable. At this point, serious health problems may already be developing or have developed internally in the user.

Philips CPAP Recall Exposes Health Dangers

You should feel safe when you use a medical device. Sleep apnea machines should be as safe as possible to use, but a recent recall of a trusted CPAP machine is causing users to worry.

On June 14, 2021, a Class I recall of Philips DreamStation2 occurred. A Class I recall, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is when it is determined that a device could cause serious adverse health effects or even death. Both the user and persons near it can be considered in a reasonable probability of danger. The FDA considers this to be the most urgent type of recall that they can issue.

The specific reason that the Philips company recalled millions of the CPAP and other sleep apnea machines is because users were inhaling a toxic foam when using the machine. A defect within the machines is the source of the released toxin. When ingested, this polyester-based polyurethane foam can cause cancer and other significant and even life-threatening health problems.

Potential Health Risks of a CPAP Machine

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined that the foam used to minimize the sound and vibration in these devices can deteriorate over time. When this happens, black pieces of foam, as well as other chemicals that are not visible, can be inhaled or swallowed by the user of the device.

Some of the resulting health problems include the following:

  • Headaches
  • Upper airway irritations
  • Coughing
  • Chest pressure
  • Sinus infections
  • Asthma
  • Damage to liver and kidneys
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Increased breathing difficulties

These symptoms could be an indicator of additional issues stemming from the CPAP malfunction. If your item is recalled, it is best to seek medical attention promptly. If possible, document your symptoms. The personal records you create and the documentation and records from professional medical attention can be used by your personal injury lawyers as they establish a case for you.

Damages You Might Obtain

Once it is established that a CPAP or similar machine caused your injury, you can seek restitution for your injury and suffering. For example, in a civil action claim or lawsuit against a sleep apnea manufacturer, there are various types of damages you could recover. Below are some of the damages you may be able to obtain.

Medical costs

When we are suffering from a serious health issue, medical bills quickly start piling up. Specific medical care costs that you can recover may include:

  • Emergency room care
  • Hospitalization
  • Surgeries
  • Doctor’s appointments
  • Physical therapy
  • Prescription medications that are necessary to treat your injuries

Other economic damages

Economic damages can be significant and adversely affect your financial situation for a long time. The damages you recover related to this damage can include:

  • Bills you paid
  • Lost wages
  • Debts you owe that come from the injuries caused by the sleep apnea machine

Future financial damage

In addition to immediate financial repercussions from the failed sleep apnea machine, there may also be long-term economic aftereffects such as:

  • Expected income loss while treating or living with your injuries
  • Reduced earning potential

Get Help in Your Legal Recovery After a Sleep Apnea Machine Injury

When you follow the instructions to operate a sleep apnea machine, you anticipate both that it will work properly and improve your health. After all, the goal of feeling better is the primary reason you have submitted to having a mask strapped to your face night after night. The disappointment and frustration you feel when you realize that it isn’t functioning correctly and may be harming you can be devastating.

You are within your rights to want to feel better and receive compensation for any harm and injury that has been done to you. Suppose you have developed a serious health condition because of using a CPAP or other sleep apnea machine. In that case, you may qualify to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the manufacturer.

The idea of trying to take on a large medical supply company can seem overwhelming, but you do not have to do so alone. The CPAP and sleep apnea machine injury lawyers of Judd Shaw Injury Law™ have years of experience fighting for New Jersey and New York victims. And with our No Fee Guarantee®, you won’t pay us anything unless you get money for your claim.

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