Florida Da Vinci Robot Attorneys
The da Vinci robot was designed to help improve surgeons’ view during minimally invasive surgeries. Unfortunately, defects in the machines and surgeon errors when using the robot have caused many patient injuries. Patients that have been injured during surgery in which a da Vinci robot was used may be entitled to compensation.
Use of da Vinci Robot
The da Vinci robot was designed for surgeries as an alternative to laparoscopic surgery. When the da Vinci robot was approved by the FDA in 2000, many hospitals purchased the machines with the intention of improving recovery times. The company that manufactured the robot, Intuitive Surgical, made claims that the da Vinci robot reduces recovery time when compared with laparoscopic surgery. This claim has not been proven and many complications have arisen from use of the Da Vinci robot.
Surgeries that the da Vinci robot is commonly used for include:
- Prostate surgery or removal
- Kidney disorders and cancers
- Treatment of Coronary Artery Disease
- Treatment of uterine prolapse
Types of da Vinci Robot Injuries
Injuries that may occur during surgeries in which the da Vinci robot is used include:
- Surgical burns
- Lacerations to internal organs
- Puncture of internal organs
- Lacerations to skin and tissue
- Bowel injuries
Da Vinci Surgery Complications
Unfortunately, many of the injuries caused by the da Vinci robot are not noticed until days after the surgery because of the closed nature of the surgery. In many cases, injuries worsen as a result of the delay. Injuries may become life threatening if not treated quickly enough.
Da Vinci Robot Liability
The party or parties that are held liable for da Vinci robot injuries depend on the details of the surgery in which the injury occurred. If the surgeon made an error that resulted in injury, the surgeon may be liable. If the surgeon was following hospital procedures when the injury occurred or did not receive proper training before using the robot, the hospital or medical facility may be liable. If the machine malfunctioned, the manufacturer may be liable. The majority of complaints that have been filed have been in response to manufacturing defects.
Da Vinci Robot Complaints
Many of the claims against Intuitive Surgical stem from patient burns from the lack of insulation on the arms of the machine. Design flaws may also cause patients to be injured by electrical currents. Hospitals and medical facilities often complain that warnings were not issued regarding the possibility of these injuries.
Intuitive Surgical Response
In response to the growing number of claims stemming from da Vinci robot arm related injuries, Intuitive Surgical sent alternative tips for the robotic arms that are intended to reduce the risks of sparking. It is not evident whether the replacement parts have reduced the risk of electrical burns during surgery. Intuitive Surgical also issued a notice to hospitals in 2013 warning of sparking risks.
Da Vinci Robot Claims
As of July 2013, at least 33 claims had been filed for injuries related to the use of the da Vinci robot during surgery. More extreme claims relate to injuries from machines responding improperly to surgeon movements. In one such incident, a patient was hit in the face by the robotic arm at the start of the surgery, so the surgical plan was altered and open surgery was performed. In other incidents, patients have had bowel injuries, excessive bleeding, and punctured organs from the improper response.
Da Vinci Robot Attorneys
It is important for patients to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible following da Vinci robot surgery injuries. Claims are subject to Statue of Limitations laws and attorneys can help patients to compile all of the necessary documentation within the appropriated time frame. Da Vinci robot lawsuits are relatively new and lawsuits can become highly complex. An attorney that is familiar with da Vinci robot lawsuits will understand what is required to file a successful suit against the hospital, medical staff, or company.
“Da Vinci…Changing the Experience of Surgery.” Da Vinci Surgery. Intuitive Surgical, 1 Dec. 2013. Web. 14 Oct. 2014. <http://www.davincisurgery.com/>
Evans, Marisa. “KHN: Kaiser Health News.” As Robot-Assisted Surgery Expands, Are Patients And Providers Getting Enough Information? Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 1 Nov. 2013. Web. 14 Oct. 2014. <http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/stories/2013/november/01/robotic-surgery.aspx>
“MedSun Survey Report: Da Vinci Surgical System.” Center for Devices and Radiological Health. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1 Nov. 2013. Web. 14 Oct. 2014. <http://www.fda.gov/downloads/MedicalDevices/ProductsandMedicalProcedures/SurgeryandLifeSupport/ComputerAssistedRoboticSurgicalSystems/UCM374095.pdf>