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Olympus Bronchoscope

Olympus Bronchoscope Side Effects Lawsuits | Side Effects: Pseudomonas, Infection, Fever, Shortness of Breath |  Defective Instruments, Loose Valve, Trapped Bacteria

Olympus Bronchoscope Side Effects May Lead To Bacteria Infection Lawsuits

Olympus Bronchoscope | Lawsuits, Lawyers | Side Effects: Pseudomonas, Infection, Fever, Shortness of Breath | Defective Instruments, Loose Valve, Trapped Bacteria

Johns Hopkins Hospital is alerting 415 patients and their families that a defective medical instrument may have given them a potentially life-threatening lung infection. The instrument, made by Olympus American, was used to perform bronchoscopies, which inspects a patients lungs and take tissue samples.

A thin, tube-like instrument, about the width of a pencil, is placed through the nose or mouth and into the lungs. The tube has a tiny camera at the tip and uses fiber-optic technology to produce pictures of airways. Some patients who were examined by one of three contaminated bronchoscopes have died.

Hospital officials discovered the problem after realizing that 128 patients had been infected with a bacterium known as pseudomonas. The number was two to three times higher than the hospital would expect, said Dr. Paul J. Scheel Jr., vice chairman of medicine. Hospital officials told The Sun of Baltimore in Sunday editions that they have not determined how many patients have been infected or died but have sent certified letters warning 415 patients.

Those at risk include anyone who had a bronchoscopy procedure between June 1, 2001, and Feb. 4, 2002, the letter says. The letter asks patients to call their doctors if they experience symptoms that include fever, coughing, phlegm or shortness of breath. The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration are investigating the problem, in part to determine if the device has triggered outbreaks elsewhere, The Sun reported.

Most of those treated at Johns Hopkins were suffering from cystic fibrosis, AIDS or lung cancer, or had recently had lung transplants. "We don't know the cause and effect between patients who died and this infection," Scheel said. "People are going through medical charts to try to ascertain this.

The University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore has also stopped using the tool and is searching its records for patients with the infection. The state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the Baltimore health department were trying to determine if the problem exists in other hospitals.

Dr. Ross J. Brechner, the state's epidemiologist, said he sent e-mails to colleagues throughout Maryland and the country detailing the Hopkins discovery and asking whether they have noticed the same elevated infection levels after using the popular device.

The recall letter to Hopkins, dated Nov. 30, wasn't immediately acted on because it was mistakenly addressed to the loading dock of the Hopkins physiology department, the paper said. In recall letters, Olympus described the defective instruments as having a loose valve that trapped bacteria.

Legal Help For Victims Affected By Olympus Bronchoscope

If you or a loved one suffered injuries from an Olympus Bronchoscope, please fill out the form at the right for a free case evaluation by a qualified defective medical device attorney or call us at 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).


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Widely Used Sterilizer Under Attack

Jan 22, 2003 | USA Today
A system widely used by hospitals to clean medical scopes between patients may not provide adequate sterilization, say hospital officials in Pennsylvania following a bacterial outbreak that sickened 16 patients and led to one death. In a letter to the Food and Drug Administration on Monday, officials at Pittsburgh's Allegheny General Hospital say a cleaning system failed to remove bacteria from devices called bronchoscopes, which allow doctors to see into patients' lungs.The hospital stopped...

AGH Blames Bronchoscope Cleaning Machine

Jan 21, 2003 | Pittsburgh Post Gazette
Two problems with a bronchoscope cleaning machine used in hospitals across the country were the probable cause of a bacterial outbreak in October at Allegheny General Hospital, according to the hospital's investigation of the incident.The hospital's findings amplify concerns that the federal Food and Drug Administration has raised previously about the Steris System I sterilizer, wrote Dr. Richard Shannon, chairman of medicine at Allegheny General, in a letter sent this week to the FDA.However,...

Faster Recall of Medical Devices Urged

Jan 16, 2003 | The Baltimore Sun
Doctors at the Johns Hopkins Hospital who traced a bacterial outbreak to a defective medical device say the problem might have been averted by a faster and broader product recall. Writing this week in The New England Journal of Medicine, the physicians called for federal regulations that would require companies to send recall notices to all doctors who might conceivably use their products. If such a rule had been in place two years ago, news that the device was capable of spreading a...

Better Recall System Needed For Medical Equipment

Jan 15, 2003 | HealthScoutNews
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) needs to improve its recall policies for faulty medical equipment, claims an article in tomorrow's issue of The New England Journal of Medicine. Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore conducted the study in response to a bacterial outbreak there last year. The outbreak, caused by faulty medical equipment used to inspect the lungs, infected 39 patients with potentially deadly bacteria and may have contributed to the deaths...

Latrobe Area Hospital Sued For $90M

Jan 2, 2003 |
A Westmoreland County woman filed a lawsuit Monday seeking more than $90 million because she was examined with a defective medical instrument. Anne Stanley, of Loyalhanna, claims she had to cope with the fear of not knowing whether she had been infected with a potentially deadly bacteria after a defective bronchoscope was used twice to evaluate a spot in one of her lungs. The examinations were performed at Latrobe Area Hospital in January 2001 and June 2001, according to the lawsuit. The...

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