Randy Boyd’s CPAP Nightmare: How Philips Respironics’ sleep apnea treatment device took one user from a sleep disorder to cancer
In 2016, Randy Boyd thought his dreams had come true. He was prescribed a Philips Respironics CPAP device to help him with his sleep apnea.
From the onset, the device was a game changer.
“I thought, ‘This is the greatest thing on earth. I’m starting to dream again. I’m sleeping well. I wake up, and I’m refreshed,’” Randy told Steve Murphy, Executive Producer and Host of Insider Exclusive, in his program, “Justice in America – Life-Threatening Philips Respironics Medical Devices – What You Need to Know – Randy Boyd’s Story.”
However, the joys of a good night’s sleep were gradually overshadowed by other ailments. Persistent issues with a swollen throat and laryngitis that left him speechless for a week at a time sent Randy on frequent trips to the doctor. Nobody could tell him what was wrong.
One such visit stemmed from Randy detecting a bruise and sensitivity on the left side of his neck. The doctor felt Randy’s neck and ordered a sonogram, followed by a biopsy.
In July 2020, Randy was diagnosed with throat cancer. He was 58 years old.
The diagnosis puzzled Randy, who had no family history of cancer.
Randy endured surgeries, 33 radiation treatments and over six weeks of chemo. Although the treatments took care of his left side, the cancer metastasized to his right side.
This required additional treatments.
The cancer didn’t stop there. It travelled to Randy’s liver, demanding still more medical treatments. His last surgery, in May 2022, involved cutting out a piece of his liver.
Just when he thought the nightmare had ended, Randy received another blow.
A friend sent Randy a link to an article explaining that more than a dozen Philips Respironics machines were recalled because of potential health risks from faulty components.
“I couldn’t believe what I was hearing,” Randy said. “For two years, I’ve been fighting cancer, and this machine’s got to be the culprit... It’s horrible.”
To make matters worse, Randy discovered that Philips knew its devices were defective in 2015—a full year before Randy began using the Philips CPAP.
“I’ve been through some bad things because of this company,” Randy said. “I don’t want anyone to go through what I’ve been through because of the Philips CPAP machine.”
Philips’ defective bi-level positive air pressure (BiPAP), continuous positive air pressure (CPAP), and ventilator machines contain sound abatement foam that degrades, leaving users to inhale or ingest cancer-causing foam particles and gases, including isocyanates. The affected machines were recalled in 2021.
Millions of Philips CPAP users were left scrambling for alternatives to alleviate the problems they endure with common sleep disorders. The FDA required Philips to submit a repair-and-replacement program for the defective components. This caused a serious order backlog.
Like so many users, Randy had no choice but to continue using his defective Philips breathing device until he received a replacement unit—in January of 2022.
Randy used the defective CPAP machine for a total of 6 ½ years.
Justice in America met with LPR Trial Attorney Troy Bouk and Randy Boyd to talk about their fight to obtain some form of justice for Randy’s suffering. Troy also shared valuable information about the FDA Class 1 recall of Philips CPAP machines, including who is affected, the risks of foam exposure, and how LPR can help CPAP users who find themselves in situations similar to Randy’s.