Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Judge weighs in on Implant Lawsuit

An Iowa couple's lawsuit against Advanced Bionics is moving forward. Dennis and Melissa Eggerling claim the company's HiRes 90k cochlear implant damaged their daughter's hearing and caused other harm. The implant had a moisture problem--the same problem that led Advanced Bionics to recall the unit in 2004 (it was recalled again in 2010). The company blamed outside vendor AstroSeal for the defect, but the federal government decided Advanced Bionics did not have FDA approval to switch to AstroSeal as a parts supplier. In the Eggerling case, Judge Mark Bennett did not sign off on everything the Eggerlings claimed, but Bennett allowed enough for the case to proceed. Advanced Bionics isn't commenting on the case. You can see the ruling here and more details about the case here. A Swiss company, Sonova Holding, owns the Valencia, California-based cochlear-implant maker. With about a fifth of the market, Advanced is number two in the field.

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