Potential Dangers of Bair Hugger

Posted on: April 25, 2023

Lawsuits regarding the 3M Bair Hugger surgical warming blanket continue to flow in as more patients have come forward about post-operative complications. According to Drug Watch, several potential dangers have arisen from the malfunction of this surgical device, some resulting in life-altering and permanent injuries.

Incomplete Inflation Defect

More than 165,000 Bair Hugger warming blankets were recalled back in January 2018. The recall was due to a design defect that prevented some blankets from fully inflating. Partially inflated blankets pose the potential for dangerous drops in body temperature during surgery.

The FDA received several reports of patients who suffered from hypothermia due to incomplete warming by the blanket during surgical procedures. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines hypothermia as a dangerous condition that results from a drop in body temperature that affects the brain and body functions.

Postoperative Infections

Postoperative infections have been among the most common lawsuits against the Bair Hugger blanket. Due to additional design defects, the convection currents forcing air through the blanket’s warming system reportedly transmitted contaminated air from non-sterile areas into sterile surgical fields during procedures.

At least 5,000 lawsuits have been filed for infections, 27 requiring additional surgeries and some amputations. Most procedures were connected to knee and hip replacements. Other health complications resulting from postoperative infections include:


  • Use of intravenous antibiotic therapy
  • Deep joint infections
  • Prolonged hospitalizations
  • Implant removal
  • Thermal burns
  • Organ damage
  • Physical therapy
  • Permanent cartilage and bone damage


Bair Hugger lawsuits continue to roll in steadily as more patients come forward about postoperative complications caused by the defective surgical blanket. As of December 14, 2022, the Bair Hugger class action lawsuit was officially resumed after 3M’s attempt to appeal. “We are grateful that the Bair Hugger MDL has been formally reopened allowing us the opportunity to help those who have been injured by the warming blankets,” says lead attorney Taylor Nash.

Bair Hugger Lawsuit Attorneys

If you or a loved one were exposed to a Bair Hugger air-warming blanket during a surgical procedure and suffered from any of the above conditions, please do not hesitate to contact our office. Contact Slater Slater Schulman LLP at 1-800-251-6990 or fill out our online form, and an attorney will contact you to discuss a potential claim.

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