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Athlete’s hopes of playing pro ball dashed by shoulder pain pump

Mathew McKeown, 23, of Blue Ash, Ohio, dreamed of playing pro ball. He was an all-city football player in high school and earned a scholarship to play for Miami. Making it to the NFL was just a matter of time. But during a game in October 2006, McKeown’s left shoulder was injured while trying to recover a fumble. Doctors implanted the catheter of a On-Q PainBuster pain pump manufactured by I-Flow into his shoulder joint. For up to 72 hours, medication gradually dripped into his shoulder and slowly began eating away at the cartilage. But McKeown was tough. He rehabbed ... Read More

Medtronic faces investigations over defective Sprint Fidelis Defibrillator lead

Medtronic, Inc., the maker of the defective Sprint Fidelis Defibrillator Lead, is the now the subject of two separate investigations. A Senate panel wants information about Medtronic’s October Sprint Fidelis Defibrillator Lead recall, while a second investigation by the US Justice Department is looking into allegations that Medtronic made illegal payments to foreign physicians. Medtronic suspended sales of the Sprint Fidelis Leads after receiving reports of 5 fatalities linked to lead fractures. A lead is a wire that connects an implantable defibrillator to the heart. It is through the lead that a defibrillator is able to sense when a patient’s ... Read More

A patient an advocate a fixer

When it comes to her health, Laurel Lewis is positively fearless. The 54-year-old Minneapolis woman has stared down a rare breed of late-stage cancer. And last year, she technically died after her heart stopped beating, but luckily her near-fatal attack occurred just outside Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina. She left the hospital with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) made by Medtronic Inc. tucked inside her chest, a kind of medical-device insurance policy intended to shock her heart back into rhythm if she goes into sudden cardiac arrest. “I have faced the darkest day,” she said recently. But on Oct. 15, ... Read More