A woman plaintiff from Ohio has filed a lawsuit against Fresenius Medical Care over her husband’s death from GranuFlo. The lawsuit was filed on November 13, 2012 in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio, which alleges that the dialysis concentrate was the cause of her husband’s death. The plaintiff was named as Deborah Swigert, the grieving widow of Charles Swigert, a resident of Ohio.

According to the lawsuit filed by the plaintiff and her personal injury lawyer the husband of the widow was given dialysis on November 11, 2010 at the Fresenius Medical Care Center in Ohio. The lawsuit said that the concentrates used during the treatment were GranuFlo or NaturaLyte. One thing that is peculiar about these two concentrates is that while other concentrates use acetic acid, NaturaLyte and GranuFlo use sodium di-acetate.

The concentration of acetic acid in a di-acetate is twice as those of acetic acid which have the potential to raise the level of bicarbonate levels in the blood more than any other concentrates that are available. A high level of bicarbonate in the blood can alter the pH of the blood making it comparatively more alkaline. An alkaline blood can cause various health problems like arrhythmias and heart attacks.

In the lawsuit the plaintiff has accused that the manufacturer of the concentrates failed to provide adequate information about the risks that these concentrates carry and that an altered pH level caused her husband loose his life. Had she been warned about the potential risks of the electrolytes, she would have never allowed doctors use them for the dialysis of her husband. The plaintiff has brought multiple counts against the defendant including negligence, defective manufacturing, defective design, inadequate warnings, breach of warranty and misrepresentation. The plaintiff seeks for compensatory and punitive damages as she has undergone a loss that is permanent in nature. The plaintiff and her GranuFlo attorney seek damages in excess of $75,000.

WHAT IS GRANUFLO?

GranuFlo is one of the widely prescribed dry acids used for uniform distribution of electrolytes during kidney dialysis. Dialysis is done when the kidney loses its capacity to purify blood thereby altering the pH of the blood. Dialysis is one of those methods that is widely used to revert and undo the chemical alteration that the blood has undergone due to the accumulation of toxic wastes. In fact the process neutralizes acid in the blood by elevating the concentration of bicarbonates in the blood, however excessive bicarbonate from the combination of prescribed bicarbonate and that produced by GranuFlo could result in metabolic alkalosis. Metabolic alkalosis can cause numerous fatal side effects including heart attack, stroke and cardiopulmonary arrest.