December 15, 2017

Littleton medical firm pays $2.4M over deceptive marketing

Courtesy/Medtronic
Medtronic's U.S. headquarters in Minnesota. The company has settled in Massachusetts and four other states for deceptive marketing.

Medtronic, a surgical device maker with an office in Littleton, will pay $2.4 million to settle allegations from the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office saying the company unlawfully promoted a device used in surgeries.

The company allegedly used a deceptive marketing strategy for its Infuse Bone Graft product, which is used to stimulate bone growth.

Medtronic collaborated with physicians to publish studies in peer-reviewed journals that left out "adverse results, downplayed side-effects, overstated the comparative efficacy of Infuse, and failed to disclose consultant ties to Medtronic," the Attorney General's Office said.

Attorney General Maura Healey said a company cannot use deceptive practices to increase their profits while compromising the safety of patients.

The Massachusetts payment is part of a broader $12-million settlement also including attorneys general in California, Illinois, Oregon and Washington. Medtronic has its United States headquarters in Minneapolis and is based in Ireland.

As part of the settlement, Medtronic faces limits on its promotional use of clinical trial information and the dissemination of public medical journal articles related to clinical trials of Infuse.

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