OGDEN — Patients who have surgery done with robotics typically have less blood loss, less post-operative pain, shorter hospital stays, lowered requirement for pain medication and a faster return to normal activities and work, an Ogden doctor says.
Intuitive Surgical Inc., the maker of the da Vinci robotic system, was used in nearly 400,000 surgeries across the country last year. Some of its uses include prostate surgery, hysterectomies, kidney removal, gallbladder removal and heart valve repair.
But the million-dollar system has come under scrutiny lately, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is looking into a spike of reported problems that include five deaths, a robotic hand slapping a patient on the operating table and a robotic hand grasping onto tissue and not letting go. Lawsuits filed by family members claim the surgeons who performed the procedures on their loved ones were insufficiently trained.
So is it time to go back to traditional laparoscopic and open surgeries?