Intended for healthcare professionals


Adverse events with medical devices may go unreported

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: (Published 19 October 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:905
  1. Nicola Baker, specialist registrar in microbiology. (,
  2. Claire Tweedale, infection control project nurse, department of infection control.,
  3. Chris J Ellis, consultant physician, department of infection and tropical medicine.
  1. Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham B9 5SS

    EDITOR—Amoore and Ingram report that 400 people a year are seriously injured or killed as a result of adverse incidents with medical devices.1 We believe that this figure is the tip of the iceberg and that many more cases occur that are simply not recognised. Infectious complications of medical devices are often not considered in the context of reporting, and so the possible lessons that can minimise recurrence remain unlearnt.

    One of the most commonly used medical devices in hospital patients are peripheral intravenous …

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