Ernest Lau, a cardiologist at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Ireland, was one of the first doctors to identify a defect in Riata that led to its recall in 2011. Now Lau is telling colleagues it’s time to embrace the company’s updated device.
Riata, a wire that connects a life-saving defibrillator to the heart, could break out of its protective coating, putting patients at risk for inappropriate shocks or leaving them untreated when a shock was needed. Lau noted the flaw in 2006, and subsequent tests to patients found the problem occurred in 15 percent. St. Jude pulled the device from the market in 2010, with U.S. regulators calling it a recall the next year.