Baxter International Inc. Lawsuit Filed in Wake of Dialysis Deaths - Chicago Tribune - November 14, 2001

Baxter International Inc.: Lawsuit Filed in Wake of Dialysis Deaths Reuters
Chicago Tribune
November 14, 2001

A Chicago law firm Tuesday filed the first U.S. lawsuit against Baxter International Inc. on behalf of patients with kidney disease treated with what the firm called 'potentially deadly' dialysis products.

The firm of Kenneth B. Moll & Associates Ltd. said it filed the suit in the Circuit Court of Cook County, seeking class-action status. The suitalso named Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing Co., the producer of a fluid used to check the filters for leaks. A spokesman for St. Paul-based 3M declined to comment on the litigation.

Baxter last week said the fluid, perfluorohydrocarbon, may have played a role in some of the deaths. It recalled its A and AF series dialysis filters, or dialyzers, last month.

Dialyzers help cleanse toxins in patients suffering from kidney failure. The A and AF series dialyzers were part of Baxter's acquisition of Althin Medical AB in March 2000. Another line of filters, called AX, was discontinued in February.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified compensation for those injured and those that died. The law firm said 56 people have died following use of the filters.