Home » Surgical robot pierces the intestine, woman dies in the United States

Surgical robot pierces the intestine, woman dies in the United States

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Surgical robot pierces the intestine, woman dies in the United States

Robotic Surgery Device Causes Death of Woman, Lawsuit Alleges

An American woman, Sandra Sultzer, tragically lost her life after undergoing a surgical intervention for colon cancer, as a result of a robotic device malfunction. The lawsuit for manslaughter has been filed by her husband, Harvey Sultzer, against the manufacturer of the device, Intuitive Surgical, a prominent American company specializing in robotic products for minimally invasive surgical interventions.

According to the lawsuit, the robotic device caused severe damage to Sandra’s small intestine during the surgery, leading to her developing severe abdominal pain and fever. Despite undergoing a second operation to repair the damage caused by the robot, Sandra ultimately succumbed to her injuries in February 2022.

Sandra had undergone surgery at the “Baptist Health Boca Raton” regional hospital, where surgeons used the da Vinci robot, a remote-controlled multi-arm device. Intuitive Surgical has received positive reviews for the da Vinci robot, promoting its ability to enable precision and natural dexterity for surgeons during minimally invasive procedures.

However, the lawsuit alleges that Intuitive Surgical was aware of malfunctions in the robot, including the risk of causing electricity leaks and burning internal organs, which were not adequately communicated to the hospital or the patients. The prosecution further claims that the company sells its robots to hospitals without adequately training surgeons on how to use the devices.

This case is not an isolated incident, as the lawsuit points out thousands of prior reports of injuries and defects directly linked to the robot, which were allegedly “systematically underestimated” by Intuitive Surgical in their reports to the American Food and Drug Administration. As a result, the company faces a series of individual product liability lawsuits, as disclosed in their annual report to the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission).

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The tragic outcome of Sandra Sultzer’s surgery serves as a grave reminder of the potential risks associated with surgical robotics, and raises important questions about the transparency and accountability of companies in the medical technology industry. As the lawsuit unfolds, it may shed further light on the responsibilities of manufacturers in ensuring the safety and efficacy of their products in the healthcare setting.

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