Association between Regulatory Submission Characteristics and Recalls of Medical Devices Receiving 510(k) Clearance

Alexander O. Everhart, Soumya Sen, Ariel D. Stern, Yi Zhu, Pinar Karaca-Mandic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Importance: Most regulated medical devices enter the US market via the 510(k) regulatory submission pathway, wherein manufacturers demonstrate that applicant devices are "substantially equivalent" to 1 or more "predicate" devices (legally marketed medical devices with similar intended use). Most recalled medical devices are 510(k) devices. Objective: To examine the association between characteristics of predicate medical devices and recall probability for 510(k) devices. Design, Setting, and Participants: In this exploratory cross-sectional analysis of medical devices cleared by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) between 2003 and 2018 via the 510(k) regulatory submission pathway, linear probability models were used to examine associations between a 510(k) device's recall status and characteristics of its predicate medical devices. Public documents for the 510(k) medical devices were collected using FDA databases. A text extraction algorithm was applied to identify predicate medical devices cited in 510(k) regulatory submissions. Algorithm-derived metadata were combined with 2003-2020 FDA recall data. Exposures: Citation of predicate medical devices with certain characteristics in 510(k) regulatory submissions, including the total number of predicate medical devices cited by the applicant device, the age of the predicate medical devices, the lack of similarity of the predicate medical devices to the applicant device, and the recall status of the predicate medical devices. Main Outcomes and Measures: Class I or class II recall of a 510(k) medical device between its FDA regulatory clearance date and December 31, 2020. Results: The sample included 35176 medical devices, of which 4007 (11.4%) were recalled. The applicant devices cited a mean of 2.6 predicate medical devices, with mean ages of 3.6 years and 7.4 years for the newest and oldest, respectively, predicate medical devices. Of the applicant devices, 93.9% cited predicate medical devices with no ongoing recalls, 4.3% cited predicate medical devices with 1 ongoing class I or class II recall, 1.0% cited predicate medical devices with 2 ongoing recalls, and 0.8% cited predicate medical devices with 3 or more ongoing recalls. Applicant devices citing predicate medical devices with 3 or more ongoing recalls were significantly associated with a 9.31-percentage-point increase (95% CI, 2.84-15.77 percentage points) in recall probability compared with devices without ongoing recalls of predicate medical devices, or an 81.2% increase in recall probability relative to the mean recall probability. A 1-SD increase in the total number of predicate medical devices cited by the applicant device was significantly associated with a 1.25-percentage-point increase (95% CI, 0.62-1.87 percentage points) in recall probability, or an 11.0% increase in recall probability relative to the mean recall probability. A 1-SD increase in the newest age of a predicate medical device was significantly associated with a 0.78-percentage-point decrease (95% CI, 1.29-0.30 percentage points) in recall probability, or a 6.8% decrease in recall probability relative to the mean recall probability. Conclusions and Relevance: This exploratory cross-sectional study of 510(k) medical devices cleared by the FDA between 2003 and 2018 demonstrated significant associations between 510(k) submission characteristics and recalls of medical devices. Further research is needed to understand the implications of these associations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-156
Number of pages13
JournalJAMA
Volume329
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 10 2023

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