Another botched hysterectomy blamed on da Vinci robot

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Another woman is claiming the da Vinci surgical robot botched her hysterectomy and has filed a lawsuit seeking more than $270 million in damages against the makers of the device.

In her lawsuit against Intuitive Surgical, 43-year-old Patricia Mayfield claims the medical device maker has resorted to a campaign of intimidation of surgeons and their host hospitals, convincing them the da Vinci surgical robot is a must-have for their healthcare facility, keeping them competitive in an ultra-competitive market. Because her hospital used the da Vinci robot, Mayfield says she was told to have the surgery using the robot over an actual surgeon despite evidence suggesting a hands-on surgery was the safer means.

A week after having the hysterectomy performed, Mayfield states in her lawsuit that she began suffering “shaking chills” and a fever and reported back to the Nelson Center for Women, in Meridian, Miss., and has been forced to endure several revision surgeries to repair a “pelvic abscess along the vaginal cuff.”

According to a report on the lawsuit from MassDevice.com, the complaint also alleges Intuitive Surgical has been active in “suppressing complaints and concealing rates of complications from the public and the FDA. Additional allegations include lack of proper physician training, insufficient post-marketing surveillance and comparison testing and over-promotion of the da Vinci system.”

This is just the latest in a recent string of lawsuits being filed alleging the da Vinci surgical robot botched a surgery, especially a procedure that’s been proven more effective and safer when conducted by a human surgeon. In each lawsuit, the complaint also charges Intuitive Surgical with an aggressive and intimidating approach to almost force hospitals to use their device over an actual surgeon.