Last week, reporter Brian Williams presented a segment on NBC’s Rock Center that brought to light the mounting number of reports of serious injuries and deaths linked to the da Vinci surgical robot. The device, made by Intuitive Surgical, has been the subject of multiple personal injury lawsuits filed by victims who suffered severe injury or the wrongful death of a loved one resulting from complications that arose during or shortly after surgery where this system was employed.
The da Vinci surgical robot is a complex medical device consisting of four arms which a surgeon manipulates via hand and foot controls to conduct minimally-invasive surgical procedures. Though robotic surgery is more expensive than traditional surgical procedures, many patients feel the investment worthwhile because of the reduced scarring and shorter recovery times associated with this type of endoscopic surgery. Since it was approved by the FDA in 2000, the da Vinci robot has grown increasingly popular and is now used in surgeries ranging from hysterectomies to heart surgeries and more.
As use of the da Vinci system becomes more common, so do claims of serious injuries and deaths linked to the device. In the NBC segment, Williams exposes the devastating side effects suffered by a woman who underwent a hysterectomy where the robot was used. He goes on to note several other cases of injuries related to the da Vinci robot, concluding that it seems da Vinci robot risks and problems may be much more common than Intuitive Surgical claims in its aggressive marketing campaigns.
According to the NBC report, the aggressive marketing by Intuitive Surgical may be at the root of the growing number of da Vinci® robot injuries and deaths. As a result of Intuitive Surgical’s relentless promotion of the device, many hospitals are allegedly pressured to buy the $1.5 million robot. Once a hospital purchases the system, surgeons are often pressured to use it as often as possible to try to recoup the costs of buying and maintaining the da Vinci robot. In many cases, the report claims, these surgeons feel pushed into using the device before they have undergone adequate training to be proficient in the operation of the robot.
In light of Intuitive Surgical’s alleged failure to provide adequate warning of the risks associated with the da Vinci robot, victims who suffered harm as a result of robotic surgery may be able to recover substantial compensation for their damages by filing a product liability lawsuit. If you have suffered injury or the loss of a loved one resulting from use of the da Vinci surgical robot, our lawyers may be able to help you. Contact Berkowitz and Hanna LLC to schedule a consultation with an experienced Connecticut product liability lawyer today.