Dutch firm sued over Indian heart patients

At least 31 doctors in 17 hospitals in India used heart patients as guinea pigs for stents made by the Eindhoven firm Occam without their knowledge, report various media on Tuesday.

It is however not known if anyone suffered serious medical damage as a result of the tests, reports the Volkskrant. Stents are tiny tubes that hold arteries open.
Dutch lawyer Lionel Lalji, who represents several patients, says hundreds of people were used for the medical trials. Lalji on Monday demanded €50,000 per person in damages from Occam and its parent company Biosensors.
According to documents acquired by Lalji, 340 uncertified stents were placed in the hearts of patients in hospitals in cities such as Delhi and Bangalore.
Two years ago it emerged that Occam had tried out new types of stents on 70 patients at the JJ Hospital in Mumbai, according to ANP news service.
In 2006 the Dutch health inspectorate carried out an investigation into the affair and said the the working practices of Occam in India were unprofessional. However, it concluded that the tests in India were outside its authority, reports ANP.

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