Fresenius Medical Care, maker of the dialysate GranuFlo, is the subject of a wrongful death lawsuit after a patient’s fatal heart attack. The medical company runs the nation’s largest chain of dialysis clinics.
Fresenius’s GranuFlo dialysate has been the subject of controversy due to a potential imbalance of bicarbonate and sodium acetate; the company reportedly knew of the compound’s side effects nine years ago, in 2004, but at that time issued no warnings to either patients or clinics. The wrongful death lawsuit was filed after a patient suffered a fatal heart attack; the victim regularly attended dialysis appointments and received the GranuFlo dialysate, two days after which she was found deceased in her home.
Fresenius did issue a warning to its company clinics after it became aware of the potential link between its drugs and patient deaths, but it did not issue the same warning to non-Fresenius clinics that were also using GranuFlo. Nine hundred and forty-one (941) patients are alleged to have died after using GranuFlo; due to this high number, a multidistrict litigation was created in order to consolidate the expected complaints.
Companies that supply critical medical products such as dialysate have a clear and definite responsibility to ensure that the products are safe for consumer use; Fresenius’s irresponsibility in this matter is inexcusable, as is any company’s that does not take patients’ safety under full consideration.
While no amount of compensation can ever bring back a lost family member, taking legal action in the form of a wrongful death suit can bring some justice to the tragedy.