Baron and Budd Now Accepting Cases Involving Defibrillator Malfunctions

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St. Jude Medical’s Riata, Riata ST and Durata Models Among Those That Can Cause Major Health Issues

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The national law firm of Baron and Budd is now accepting cases involving the malfunction of certain heart defibrillators implanted in patients. These faulty devices may either send unnecessary jolts to a patient’s heart or, in some instances, fail to send a jolt when the wearer’s heart rhythm has become abnormally fast or slow. The faulty defibrillators include the Riata, Riata ST and Durata models manufactured by St. Jude Medical, a pharmaceutical company headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Class 1 recall of the Riata and Riata ST models in 2011. (

Defibrillators are implanted in patients in order to sense their heart rhythms and emit a pulse of electricity to restore normal rhythm when necessary. If the device fails to do so, the results could be potentially dangerous. The St. Jude Medical models have developed problems with their electrical leads, which have layers of insulation that help protect the electrical wires contained within. The wires connect the defibrillator with the patient’s heart. However, in some instances the wires have become exposed due to premature erosion of the leads. Once exposed, wires can cause electrical problems that either result in inappropriate sensing of abnormal heart rhythm or a failure to stimulate current when needed.

St. Jude Medical may have been aware of the lead erosion problem as early as 2005, but did not issue any sort of warning letter to doctors until 2010, when the company stopped distributing the Riata and Riata ST leads. The company issued a recall of the Riata leads on Nov. 28, 2011; at the time, an estimated 79,000 U.S. patients had the implants. The FDA later issued its Class 1 recall – its most serious form of recall – of the Riata and Riata ST Silicone Endocardial Defibrillation Leads.

On March 26, 2012, Heart Rhythm Journal published the results of a study conducted by a team of researchers at the Minneapolis Heart Institute led by Dr. Robert G. Hauser. According to the study, 22 deaths were caused by the failure of the Riata and Riata ST. (

“It is unfortunate that physicians and medical experts say if St. Jude Medical had warned them of the erosion problems sooner, the scope of the problem could have been identified much earlier,” said XXXX. “Even though the company was well aware of these issues, it continued to manufacture and market the devices – which were implanted in thousands of patients.”

It is very important to note that most people are not aware of what model of defibrillator they may have. If you or a loved one has experienced issues where their defibrillator either delivered an unnecessary jolt of electricity or failed to send a shock when needed, the national law firm of Baron and Budd wants to hear from you. Call 866-472-9108 or visit our website here: We can help identify the model of defibrillator that has been implanted and also assist you in determining your legal options.

The attorneys at Baron and Budd have been Protecting What’s Right for consumers for more than 35 years. Over the years, our national law firm has built a successful track record representing people who have been harmed by corporate wrongdoing. The firm’s pharmaceutical lawyers recently represented over 7,000 patients harmed by using the drug Avandia. Previously, Baron & Budd played a prominent role in litigation related to the diet drug Fen-Phen. As a result, the case settled for an amount valued at more than $1.275 billion (In Re Diet Drugs (Phentermine | Fenfluramine | Dexfenfluramine) Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 1203 (E.D. Pa.).

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Amanda Billo
Baron & Budd
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