New York, New York (PRWEB) April 18, 2013
The FDA is reportedly investigating the safety and efficacy of Intuitive Surgical's da Vinci system. The investigation follows a significant increase in reported problems with the surgical robot, including possible links to at least five deaths, reported ABC News. Patients scheduled for surgery should discuss the risks and benefits of robot assisted surgery with their doctor, said New York medical malpractice lawyer David Perecman.
The da Vinci surgical robot is used for include prostate removal, heart valve repair, and organ transplant.
According to ABC News, the FDA has received reports of approximately 500 incidents linked to the robot since January 2012. The reports were filed by hospitals or Intuitive Surgical. While there is no proof any of the problems were caused by the robot, and many didn't injure patients, there have been a few disturbing incidents. The report said in one instance, a robotic hand would not let go of tissue grasped during surgery. In another, a robotic arm hit a patient in the face as she lay on the operating table.
The rise in the use of robot systems for surgery prompts the questions of whether surgeries performed using robotic systems are safer for patients than conventional surgeries, and if doctors are receiving adequate training before using the system.
“Hospitals should only promote robotic surgery and other new technology, if it's the right option for the individual patient,” said Perecman. “The surgeon must also make sure the patient knows there are options, as well as the risks and benefits.”
“Critically, surgeons must have the right amount of training with the robot,” he a
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