IVC Filter

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IVC Filter

An inferior vena cava filter (IVC filter) is a type of vascular filter, a medical device that is implanted by interventional radiologists or vascular surgeons into the inferior vena cava to presumably prevent life-threatening pulmonary emboli (PEs).

IVC filters are manufactured by C.R. Bard, Inc. and Bard Peripheral Vascular, Inc. (collectively, Bard) and Cook Incorporated, Cook Medical LLC, and William Cook Europe ApS (collectively, Cook)

Recommended for patient who have a history of or are at risk of developing blood clots in the legs, including patients

  • Diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
  • Pulmonary embolus.
  • Trauma victims.
  • Immobile.
  • Recent surgery or delivered a baby.


An IVC filter traps large clot fragments and prevents them from traveling through the vena cava vein to the heart and lungs, where they could cause severe complications or even death.

Over a 5-year period, the FDA received nearly 1,000 adverse event reports related to IVC filters. In a 2010 risk communication, the FDA noted 328 patient complaints of device migration, 146 complaints of detachment of device components, 70 complaints of IVC perforation, and 56 complaints of filter fracture.

Injuries detected

  1. Device-associated morbidity
  2. Device migration
  3. Recurrent DVT/PE
  4. Filter fracture
  5. Thrombotic complications
  6. Insertion-site thrombosis.
  7. Perforation of the vena cava
  8. Filter embolisation
  9. Vena cava thrombosis

Evidence to be looked for in potential cases

  1. 1. Usage of IVC filters in operative records.
  2. 2. Indications for the usage of IVC filter from medical records.
  3. 3. Evidence of injury in follow up medical records.

Medical Record Review and claim validation of IVC case should take approximately 6 hours in most instances; however, this approximation may vary in cases based on the volume of records.

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