Recall of SynchroMed II Model 8637 Implantable Drug Infusion Pump

According to Department of Health, Therapeutic Goods Administration, this recall involved a device in Australia that was produced by Medtronic Australasia Pty Ltd.

What is this?

A correction or removal action taken by a manufacturer to address a problem with a medical device. Recalls occur when a medical device is defective, when it could be a risk to health, or when it is both defective and a risk to health.

Learn more about the data here
  • Type of Event
  • Event ID
  • Event Risk Class
    Class I
  • Event Initiated Date
  • Event Country
  • Event Source
  • Event Source URL
  • Notes / Alerts
    Australian data is current through July 2018. All of the data comes from the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration, except for the categories Manufacturer Parent Company and Product Classification.
    The Parent Company and the Product Classification were added by ICIJ.
    The parent company information is based on 2017 public records. The device classification information comes from FDA’s Product Classification by Review Panel, based on matches of recall data from the U.S. and Australia.
  • Extra notes in the data
  • Reason
    Medtronic has detected an upward shift in reports of over-infusion, defined as an infusion rate exceeding the programmed rate by more than 14.5% as described in the labelling. when over-infusion occurs, it will result in a volume discrepancy at pump refill, where the volume withdrawn is less than the volume expected. the device does not measure actual reservoir volume and in the context of over-infusion the reservoir may empty entirely without activating an alarm. over-infusion can result in a life-threatening overdose and/or drug withdrawal resulting from premature emptying of the pump. the onset of over-infusion has occurred as early as five months after implant and throughout the service life of the pump. reports indicate that once a pump has started to over-infuse, infusion rates can continue to increase, in some cases abruptly. the device does not measure actual reservoir volume and in the context of over-infusion the reservoir may empty entirely without activating an alarm.
  • Action
    Due to the low reported rate of occurrence of this issue and the inability to predict which pumps may be at risk, Medtronic is not recommending prophylactic replacement of pumps. Through the Hazard alert letter, Medtronic is recommending physicians on the appropriate management of patients implanted with the affected SynchroMed II pumps. Medtronic continues to investigate this issue and will be providing updates as more information becomes available. For further information, please refer to .



  • Manufacturer Parent Company (2017)
  • Manufacturer comment
    “If our surveillance systems identify a potential performance issue, our personnel promptly evaluate the problem, including, when appropriate, conducting root cause investigations and internal testing to assess whether the product continues to meet specifications and defined performance criteria,” Medtronic told ICIJ in a statement. “In some cases, based on this evaluation, Medtronic may determine that a recall is necessary.” The company said that it communicates with healthcare providers and/or patients and provide recommendations to address such issues. Medtronic noted that these communications can include letters, emails, calls, press releases, physician notifications and social media postings, as well as informing the FDA and other regulators of the actions.
  • Source