Robotic Surgery and Medical Malpractice: Here’s What You Need To Know 

BIKLaw Medical Malpractice Lawyer > Medical Malpractice > Robotic Surgery and Medical Malpractice: Here’s What You Need To Know 

Technological advances have played a role in healthcare, including changes in surgical procedures. The use of robotic equipment in the operating room has increased dramatically in recent years. While new technology is more efficient, it can create a challenge for asserting a medical malpractice claim.  Robotic surgery offers both advantages and disadvantages. 

What Are The Advantages Of Robotic Surgery?

There are many benefits of robotic surgery, often being used in situations where manual manipulation is exceptionally challenging and tiring for a surgeon. Robotic technology can continue for extended periods because it does not get fatigued and can accomplish extensive surgery without needing to stop or interrupt the procedure.  Robotic surgery can also eliminate mistakes caused by hand tremors or other “human errors”.  Robotic surgery leads to shorter postoperative recovery times and less pain, shorter time under anesthesia with shorter surgical procedures, and a decreased risk of cardiovascular problems. 

What Are The Disadvantages Of Robotic Surgery?

The problems associated with robotic surgeries are generally caused by either human errors while operating the machine or problems with the machine itself.  These issues often impact medical malpractice claims.  To pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit, you must show that the surgeon who provided the medical care was negligent.  Medical malpractice cases that revolve around errors that occur in the operating room where there is a machine involved in the procedure can be much more complicated than those claims that do not involve machines because there are now two players involved: humans and machines.  Therefore, determining who caused the error can be more difficult.  Robotic surgery is still new, so there are still unexpected problems, but generally, the robotic surgical errors documented in recent years have included:

  • Electrical sparks caused by robotic equipment 
  • Broken pieces of tools falling into the patient 
  • Unintended movements 

Before a surgical procedure gets underway, the patient should be well-informed of the surgical instruments used as well as the possible risks and must consent to the use of the machinery.  If the medical provider fails to disclose all of the risks and other information to the patient, and there is a problem during surgery, there could be a medical malpractice claim. 

Liability Issues From Robotic Surgery 

If there is a problem with the patient of robotic surgery, it can be challenging to determine that the mistake was caused by robotic problems, general risks associated with the procedure, or human error. Often, the liability falls on the company that manufactures the robotic surgery equipment.  There have been times when surgeons and surgical staff have been sued because of improper training of equipment use and failure to warn users about risks. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries because of robotic surgery, you should speak with a medical malpractice attorney. Call the Trial Law Offices of Bradley I. Kramer, M.D., Esq., for a free initial consultation. 

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