MONTGOMERY, ALA. (August 1, 2013)– Frank Woodson, a shareholder with Montgomery based law firm Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C. has been appointed by the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts to serve on the Plaintiffs Steering Committee for the Fresenius GranuFlo/NaturaLyte litigation pending before that Court. The case is MDL No. 2428.
“I am honored to be selected to work as part of the team prosecuting these cases on behalf of the patients suffering harm from this product,” Woodson said. “It is my hope that we can bring these cases to a successful and timely resolution for our clients.”
GranuFlo, and a similar product called NaturaLyte, were administered in dialysis clinics operated by Fresenius Medical Care. GranuFlo is a product used to help balance chemicals in the blood during dialysis treatment. It contains an ingredient that metabolizes in the body as bicarbonate. GranuFlo has more of this ingredient in it than competitor products. Studies have shown that elevated bicarbonate levels increases the risk of cardiac problems, including heart attack, stroke and sudden cardiac death. Woodson says in the case of GranuFlo, an internal memo indicates Fresenius knew about a number of cardiac problems and deaths possibly associated with GranuFlo but they did not release this information to doctors, patients or the FDA.
Consolidating the cases into a multidistrict litigation (MDL) allows the committee overseeing the process to put more pressure and focus on moving the case forward, moving cases more quickly to resolution. Lawyers will coordinate the litigation and work together on issues of science and discovery. Woodson works in Beasley Allen’s Mass Torts section, which investigates claims of dangerous drugs and defective medical devices.