The da Vinci Surgical System, approved by the FDA in 2000, was designed to be used for surgeries that require a great amount of precision, such as laparoscopies and hysterectomies. The arms are designed in such a way that they have greater range of movement than the human hand, and they are equipped with tremor reduction components, making them more stable than a surgeon’s hand. Additionally, manual surgery forces the doctor to stand for significant periods of time while performing surgery, and the da Vinci Robot allows a surgeon to sit in a comfortable chair with 3D imaging and ergonomic controls, reducing the likelihood of human error. Because of this, Intuitive Surgical (the company that makes the robots) and some surgeons claim that the minimally-invasive device leads to quicker recovery times and less loss of blood along with the minimization of error.
Criticism and Lawsuits
While it may be true that da Vinci Surgical Systems afford doctors some great benefits, there have been complications that have caused some to believe that the devices are not worth their cost – over $2 million, with the need for a good deal of maintenance. The company has warned that the material of the Hot Shears has the potential to crack, allowing electrical currents to travel through the device, which has been reported to result in burns to internal organs. However, the company did not recall the Hot Shears attachment, though they report to be developing a replacement. Some also argue that the da Vinci robot can malfunction, causing nearby organs and vessels to be cut and punctured. This in turn leads to injuries that could lead to death if undetected. Lawsuits have been filed against the company by family members of people who have died shortly after having had surgery by a da Vinci robot, prompting the FDA to launch an investigation. However, the report deemed the trial insufficient to make a well-informed decision, being that the survey was limited in its amount of participants and types of surgeries tested.
If You Have a Case
If you or a family member has suffered complications in a surgery that was performed using a da Vinci Surgical System, get in contact with a lawyer to review your options in pursuing compensation. It is possible that you have a case if the da Vinci system caused unwanted punctures, lacerations, or burns. Call Seth Gladstein at 502-791-9000 and receive a free consultation on your case. He has a great deal of experience working on personal injury cases, and he will be able to provide you with the information needed to determine how to proceed.