Regulatory Focus™ > News Articles > UK Recall Notice Shows Even the Simplest Devices Capable of Causing Patient Harm

UK Recall Notice Shows Even the Simplest Devices Capable of Causing Patient Harm

Posted 25 July 2013 | By Alexander Gaffney, RAC

Medical devices are often complicated products-something reflected in a great deal of recall notices around the world. Sometimes a mechanical defect can imperil the safety of a multimillion-dollar piece of machinery; other times a simple software glitch can have unintended consequences. And then there's a recall notice issued by the UK's Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on 24 July 2013 involving ostensibly the simplest of all devices: a walking stick.

The walking sticks in question are manufactured by Patterson Medical, a medical device company that makes a wide range of mobility and rehabilitation products. In the case of its "Days Walking Stick," however, certain batches have defective handles which can crack, causing the user-often an elderly person-to fall, a potentially devastating event that can lead to serious complications.

Patterson had issued a field alert about the issue in June 2013, but said it had "insufficient confirmation from users that they [had] acted" to return the products.

Even the simplest devices, it seems, can have effects that are as dangerous as the most complex ones.


Patterson Medical Recall Notice


Regulatory Focus newsletters

All the biggest regulatory news and happenings.

Subscribe