3M Faces Lawsuit for Catastrophic Orthopedic Infection

By Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP

By: Indhira Benitez

Tommy Walton, a 70-year-old man residing in Hemphill, Texas, has had 15 surgeries due to a deep joint infection which followed a hip replacement surgery at Houston Orthopedic Hospital. Walton may be the first of many patients who have suffered bacterial infections due to the Bair Hugger device now distributed by 3M.

The Bair Hugger device is the leading surgical patient warming product in the United States having over 50,000 Bair Hugger units in use across the country. Walton claims, in his suit, that the 3M Bair Hugger picked germs up and blew them directly onto the hip replacement device. Once a pathogen settles on an artificial joint, the infection is nearly impossible to defeat.

Dr. Scott Augustine, the original pioneer of the Bair Hugger, has been campaigning against the device for some time. Dr. Augustine has been making the exact claims that Mr. Walton alleges caused his infection. This can create a major legal battle for 3M if more patients come forward with claims asserting infections due to the Bair Hugger.

Here at Rheingold Law, we strive to represent individuals who have suffered due to medical malpractice and large corporation’s negligence in refusing to recall hazardous products. Although Mr. Walton is now seeking justice, he is now left with severe disability and pain, which can not unfortunately be reversed.

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