Advances in technology have affected us in all areas of our lives. The medical profession is no exception, yet who would have thought such advances would involve robotic surgeries? The daVinci surgical robotic device has been a popular tool in hospitals and clinics across the country. It was created to enhance the surgical process, allowing the physician to operate the hands of a robot with increased precision from a remote location. Criticisms of the medical tool are based on the alleged lack of training on the use of the robot, along with the presence of an inherent defect in its design. This design flaw is said to cause arching or a surge of electrical current that can invade the patient’s healthy tissue.
Patients and opponents of the robot claim it can expose the patient to unnecessary risks and result in severe injuries leading to death. The operation of the device allows small incisions resulting in clearer viewing by the surgeon. Since it is theoretically less invasive, it may result in faster healing time and less blood loss during a procedure. First used in 2000 in gynecological, urologic and laparoscopic surgeries, the robot is equipped with a three-dimensional camera and multiple, remote-controlled arms.
Lawsuits filed have included claims of burns and lacerations of vital organs. In some cases, patients had to undergo additional surgery to undo damage caused by the device; in others, death of the patient followed the procedure. According to recent research, there may be a significant lack of evidence in favor of utilizing the device. While doctors assert there is risk with all surgical procedures, there have been multiple malpractice suits filed against the company producing the device. These complaints state serious complications have occurred in what should be relatively routine surgeries like gynecological or prostate procedures.
We have come to implicitly trust our doctors and other care providers; however, mistakes can happen with humans or machines. If you or a loved one have been harmed by a procedure involving a daVinci surgical robot, or if you have suffered any type of surgical error, you may be entitled to compensation under the law.
Source: lawyersandsettlements.com, “DaVinci Surgical Robot Complaints” No author given, Sep. 21, 2013