Lawsuits filed in contaminated IV cases

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A wrongful death lawsuit has been filed in connection with tainted IV.  The Montgomery law firm of Jere Beasley filed the suit on behalf of Barbara Young, whose mother Mary Ellen Kise died at Baptist Hospital in Prattville. Nine people have died at Alabama hospitals in connection to a bacterial outbreak caused by contaminated total parenteral nutrition (TPN), the liquid nutrition fed to a patient through an IV.

The Alabama Health Department said the contaminated nutritional IV was recalled because of a threat to the public. In Birmingham, attorney Shay Samples was contacted by two clients. One was the family of a women in her seventies who died at Princeton Baptist Medical Center.

"They are saddened to lose their mother under any circumstances. To discover this is very disheartening," Samples said.

Samples has another client who survived after being treated at Select Specialty Hospital out of Trinity Medical Center.

"He probably has some sort of brain damage from an extremely high fever he developed while taking the TPN IV solution," Samples  said.

Late Wednesday, Shelby Baptist Medical Center, one of the hospitals where patients died from the bacterial infection, sued the manufacturer of the IVs, Meds IV. A Shelby County judge granted a temporary restraining order preventing the company from destroying any evidence which could be used in a lawsuit. Med IV's office in Homewood remains closed. No one answered the phone of the company's owner in Alabaster.

Samples says he is just beginning his investigation which could lead to a lawsuit.

"I'm shocked. This sort of thing should not happen and will not happen in the absence of gross negligence. It's scary," he said.