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Da Vinci Robot Surgical Risks Detailed

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, April 17, 2012

Training Important
However, because there are complication rates and a risk of mortality with robotic surgery, it's important that surgeons who use the robot have appropriate experience and training, Giulianotti says.

"Unfortunately, there are institutions that are using the robot just because they want to be in the newspaper and want to advertise (that they have the latest technology)," although sometimes their surgeons are not sufficiently trained on the device. "The procedure ends up taking longer because people don't know exactly what to do, and this is connected to bad training."

Longer procedure times mean more anesthesiology and greater risk.

Giulianotti says that the study points to the need for hospital medical staffs to make sure surgeons are adequately trained and credentialed before granting staff privileges for robotic surgery.

"I think the surgical community and associations should work to clearly evaluate the standards, which are the guidelines for proctoring, teaching and training for giving privileges," to perform robotic surgery in hospitals, he says.

At the University of Illinois, he says, "We never let an inexperienced surgeon operate alone (with the da Vinci) without guidance or proctorship."

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2 comments on "Da Vinci Robot Surgical Risks Detailed"


Leanne White (12/19/2012 at 9:59 PM)
When something went wrong with my da Vinci surgery, IT had every thing to do with the Doctor's skill. Of course emergency surgery and 6 other procedures later, since the Doctor, quote and I quote, "didn't kill me, or leave me with an injury that couldn't be fixed" I had no grounds to sue him or at least have him write off the balance not paid by my insurance. Who cares that I missed out on more than a year of my life getting someone else to fix what he did.

bev M.D. (4/19/2012 at 6:25 PM)
"You don't leave big scars and adhesions, you have less post-operative pain, recovery times are shorter, and infection rates almost non-existent." I hope the study provided evidence to support this rather all-encompassing statement of superiority. Otherwise it's just more advertising. Was there such evidence? No doubt the article is available by subscription only......