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Fresenius Medical Care – the nation’s largest operator of dialysis centers – withheld information from patients about a potentially deadly risk associated with GranuFlo.
A November 2011 internal memo from the Fresenius medical office was sent to doctors in their dialysis centers warning that improper use of Fresenius' NaturaLyte Liquid or GranuFlo Dry Acid Concentrate could lead to cardiac arrest and death. The memo noted that 941 patients suffered cardiac arrest in Fresenius clinics during 2010. Most patients did not hear about this risk until March 2012 when the FDA discovered the memo and alerted the public.
What are GranuFlo and NaturaLyte?
NaturaLyte and GranuFlo are used to clean a person’s blood during hemodialysis. They are both alkaline substances that, along with bicarbonate, neutralize acid buildup in the blood. GranuFlo and NaturaLyte contain acetate, which the body converts to bicarbonate. GranuFlo and NaturaLyte contain far more acetate than rival products, so when using these products the body produces much more bicarbonate. High levels of bicarbonate in the body can result in metabolic alkalosis and severe complications.
Possible Side Effects of Using GranuFlo and NaturaLyte
» Cardiac Arrest – heart fails to contract normally; unusual blood circulation
» Hypokalemia – low potassium levels; muscle cramps or weakness
» Hypoxemia – deficiency of oxygen in the blood
» Hypercapnia – too much carbon dioxide in the blood
» Cardiac arrhythmia – heart beats too fast or too slow
» Low Blood Pressure – low force of blood pushing through the body
Withholding Information is Unfair and Possibly Deadly
Patients who used GranuFlo during dialysis should not have to suffer or die because they did now know about the risks soon enough. If you or a loved one were a victim of a GranuFlo heart attack or other serious complications, contact Monheit Law to connect with a GranuFlo lawyer to get a free legal consultation.