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On January 18, 2008, the FDA announced the recall of pre-filled heparin and saline syringes manufactured by a supplier of B. Braun Medical Inc. This was in response to many reports of the syringes being contaminated by a specific bacteria called Serratia marcescens. All lots and all sizes of syringes were recalled.

The supplier, AM2PAT Inc. voluntarily conducted the recall. The bacteria can cause life-threatening infections.

Saline is a salt solution used constantly in medicine and dentistry. It has a salt content that matches that of our body fluids, which makes it safe to inject into the body. It doesn’t alter the body’s chemical balance.

Heparin is an anticoagulant — a medication for thinning the blood. It is also very widely used. It works to help the body break down blood clots and is used in treating heart attacks, heartbeat dysfunction, blood clots in the veins or lungs, and during heart surgery. Because heparin breaks down quickly (that is, has a short biological half-life), it is usually injected frequently or given as a continuous infusion.

On February 6 there will be a call-in seminar on these products and their recall, so that attorneys are informed on the issues. If you have developed any infection after being given either saline or heparin from a pre-filled syringe, please contact your doctor immediately. Then please contact our defective product lawyers for a free consultation.

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