Senators probe Medtronic and surgeons: report

BANGALORE Wed Jun 22, 2011 2:14am EDT

Senator Max Baucus (D-MT) chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, discusses the healthcare reform bill during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, September 16, 2009. REUTERS/Hyungwon Kang

Senator Max Baucus (D-MT) chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, discusses the healthcare reform bill during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, September 16, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Hyungwon Kang

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BANGALORE (Reuters) - The Senate Finance Committee will investigate if surgeons who were paid consulting and other fees by Medtronic Inc failed to note complications associated with the company's bone-growth protein, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The world's largest medical device maker on Tuesday confirmed it received a letter from Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and Sen. Charles Grassley on Infuse, the company's bone-growth product, the Journal reported.

The senators asked the medical device maker to submit documents related to adverse post-operative events and medical complications relating to the use of Infuse, the paper said.

The senators also asked the company to provide information on emails and letters between Medtronic and the surgeons who conducted Infuse clinical trials and a detailed account of payments made to the surgeons, the Journal said.

In an emailed statement to the paper, Medtronic said it provides data about adverse events that occur in clinical trials of its products to the FDA irrespective of any financial relationship between the company and the clinical investigator.

Reuters could not immediately reach Medtronic for comment outside normal U.S. business hours.

(Reporting by Vaishnavi Bala in Bangalore; Editing by David Holmes)

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