As a litigation firm representing people nationally from injuries due to robotic surgery, we feel it is important to provide yet more damaging news about robotic surgery complications. A new adverse consequence of having a hysterectomy performed via da Vinci robotic surgery is the development of serious pneumonia infections, according to a just released study by doctors at medical school at University of Texas Southwestern. (The article is in the September issues of the prestigious journal Obstetrics and Gynecology.) The reason for this doubling of pneumonia as compared to women having traditional laparoscopic removal of the uterus is related, according to the authors, to fluid buildup while the patient is in a virtually upside down position during the extended surgery.
Robotic surgery versus traditional surgery has been compared on a number of adverse outcomes, including the development of infections, loss of blood, and the much more serious matters of lacerations, burns and nerve damage. There is no clear evidence that robotic surgery is better on these counts, and yet, as the doctors at Texas Southwestern observe, the robotic surgery is much more costly: almost $2500 more than without the robot.
This particular study gains its weight from the researchers having looked at the outcomes of more than 800,000 hysterectomies. The study was the subject of an immediate report by Robert Langreth in Bloomberg, who did a previous post about the Mccalla case our firm is handling and is discussed on website.