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A group of seven plaintiffs recently filed a new Medtronic MiniMed lawsuit in the Superior Court of California.  The plaintiffs claimed that after using Medtronic’s 600 series insulin pumps, intended for the treatment of type 1 diabetes, they suffered serious injuries. This case was later removed to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

On Nov. 21, 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a Class 1 recall—the most serious type of recall—for over 300,000 Medtronic MiniMed 600 series insulin pumps.  The specified pumps could have a missing or broken retainer ring, which could cause under- or over-delivery of insulin, increasing the risk of injuries including hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia.

Plaintiffs Claim Medtronic MiniMed Insulin Pumps Malfunctioned

The plaintiffs filing this case come from all over the country, with residences in West Virginia, Kansas, Nevada, Ohio, California, and Illinois. The defendants—the manufacturers of the Medtronic MiniMed—argue that the cases have been fraudulently joined, as the mere fact that the plaintiffs each had the same medical device is “insufficient to establish that their claims arise out of the same transaction, occurrence, or series of transactions or occurrences.” The defendants plan to move to sever the claims now that they’ve been removed to the Central District of California.

Meanwhile, the plaintiffs’ claims surround two Medtronic devices:

  • Medtronic 670G System
  • Medtronic 630G System

Both of these devices were approved by the FDA in 2016. S mall, computerized devices, they mimic the way the human pancreas works by delivering small doses of insulin through a tube (catheter) connected to a thin cannula placed into the fat layer under the skin. They provide continuous delivery of short-acting insulin throughout the day, replacing the need for several daily insulin injections.

The pump can be worn around the waist in a pump case or attached to a belt or bra, in a pocket, or on an armband. Medtronic advertises that its devices automatically adjust the delivery of insulin based on glucose values, reducing high and low glucose levels.

The plaintiffs in this case claim that the defendants’ Medtronic devices were sold in an unreasonably dangerous condition and said devices were defective and unfit for the use for which they were intended.

Medtronic Recalls Over 300,000 MiniMed 600 Series Insulin Pumps

In November 2019, Medtronic recalled over 300,000 of its MiniMed 600 Series Insulin Pumps because of a manufacturing problem. The affected pumps could have a missing or broken retainer ring that helps lock the insulin cartridge into place in the pump’s reservoir compartment. If the cartridge is not locked firmly in place, the pump may over- or under-deliver insulin, resulting in hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) or hyperglycemia (high blood sugar). Severe hyperglycemia can result in a loss of consciousness, seizure, and death.

At the time, Medtronic was aware of 26,421 complaints in which the device malfunctioned this way, including 2175 reports of injuries and one death. Customers were advised to examine the retainer ring on their pump, and to stop using the pump if the retainer ring was loose, damaged, or missing, or if the reservoir did not lock into the pump as it should.

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