In the U.S., around one in 15 people suffer from sleep apnea – that’s approximately 18 million people.
Because sleep apnea causes breathing to stop intermittently, it can put patients at risk of heart failure, stroke, heart attack, and hypertension if left untreated.
CPAP machines work by pushing air into the lungs – many sleep apnea patients use them to help them breathe while they sleep.
Due to some severe health concerns, Philips Respironics has recalled several of their sleep apnea devices, including their bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines.
If you use a CPAP machine or ventilator to treat your sleep apnea symptoms, you need to know about the recent Philips CPAP recall and take this CPAP lawsuit eligibility quiz.
Here’s everything you need to know about how the Philips CPAP recall can affect you and your health.
What is the Reason for the Recall?
In June 2021, Philips recalled all of its breathing devices manufactured between 2009 and April 26, 2021. These machines contain sound abatement foam, which reduces their vibrations and makes them quieter.
Philips has found that the sound abatement foam used in these machines may degrade and release toxic particles and chemicals into users’ airways – causing carcinogenic and adverse respiratory effects.
CPAP machines that have been exposed to high temperatures and are more than three years old are most likely to be affected.
In July 2021, the FDA classified the Philips CPAP recall as a Class I recall – which means that the affected machines can cause serious injury or even death.
What Are the Health Risks of Using the Affected Machines?
Some serious health issues caused by the degrading abatement foam used in specific Philips CPAP machines have already been reported.
The reported side effects of using an affected machine include cancer, headaches, coughing, organ damage, breathing problems, toxicity, inflammatory responses, hypersensitivity, and nausea or vomiting.
According to the recall, long-term use of an affected CPAP machine can also cause skin and eye irritation or develop asthma.
Which Machines Are Affected?
Most of the recalled machines affected by the degrading foam are from Philips’ DreamStation line, and around 80% of the devices are Philips’ CPAP machines.
Philips estimates that more than 50% of all the affected devices are within the U.S.
The Bottom Line
Several of Philips’ breathing devices have been recalled over concerns that the foam in the apparatus may be releasing cancer-causing chemicals into users’ airways as it degrades over time.
Inhaling these toxic chemicals and particles can cause serious short and long-term side effects for the patients who rely on them. If you are using a Philips breathing device, the best thing to do is contact Philips to find out if your machine has been recalled.
If your machine has been recalled, speak to the doctor who prescribed the device and ask for recommendations.
If you are already suffering from side effects from using an affected machine, seek medical help right away. Once you have consulted with a primary healthcare provider, consider contacting an attorney to see if you are eligible for compensation.