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John Oliver Explains FDA Loopholes That Let Faulty Medical Devices Go to Market

Though it’s not often a late-night segment requires a safe word, John Oliver warned viewers that Last Week Tonight’s latest on medical devices is grisly enough to warrant one. Still, if you could stomach the show’s guts-deep investigation into autopsies two weeks ago, you’ll probably be fine, and Oliver’s cries of “Opossum” will give you plenty of warning when things are about to get icky.

Grosser than the detailed descriptions of malfunctioning hip replacements and vaginal mesh are the FDA loopholes that allow faulty medical implants to go to market. Watch as Oliver explains the difference between “FDA-cleared” and “FDA-approved” and demonstrates how participants in clinical studies are manipulated into giving positive answers on surveys.

Jane Krakowski makes an appearance, too, to deliver a warning: “Treat medical devices like guys who have played Batman. Some are great, but new ones aren’t necessarily better, and there are a few you definitely don’t want to let inside your body.”