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The Robotic Arm Lawsuit – How much time do I have to pursue a Claim?

What is the da Vinci Surgery Robot?

On March 23 2013, the Tampa Bay Times reported that the Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS) is training surgical teams that use new technologies including the da Vinci robot. CAMLS is training teams in Florida, nationally and internationally. The University of South Florida health system manages CAMLS.

The da Vinci robot is manufactured by Intuitive Surgical, a California based company. The da Vinci device was designed to help make invasive surgeries easier for the surgeon to perform and easier and faster for the patient to recover. Surgeons use the robots through a computer screen, while operating joysticks at a console. The invasive surgeries include gastric bypass, prostate, bladder, thyroid cancer, urology, gynecological, some heart surgeries and other surgeries.

During 2012, the da Vinci Surgery Robot was used in nearly 450,000 times. The da Vinci robot costs $1.5 million.

What Problems Can Occur?

The US Food and Drug Administration has received complaints about the robot. At least 10 lawsuits from around the country have been filed, according to the Times. Some of the adverse effects are:

  • The robot arm cuts where it’s not supposed to cut.
  • Organs are injured
  • There are burns and tears to important body parts
  • There’s abnormal bleeding

Who is responsible? The defendants are normally:

  • Intuitive Surgical, the maker of the robot arm for improper design.
  • Marketers, who over-promise what the arm can do and its ease of use.
  • Hospitals and doctors who are improperly trained in the use of the robot arm or who use the arm improperly.
  • Training companies – who fail to train the surgical team properly.

When Can Lawsuits be Started

In Florida, all claims for personal injury are established by the Florida Statute of Limitation laws. Claims MUST be started before the statute period – or the claim will be forever barred. The statutes of limitations are complicated. It’s best to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Any time limit means you must file your claim by the day BEFORE the time limit expires. If the surgery was on September 1, 2011, the two year time limit is not September 1, 2013 – it’s August 31, 2013.

Claims, in Florida for medical malpractice must be started within two years from the date of the operation that caused the injury. Claims for product liability must be started within four years.

Robotic Arm injury claims normally involve the hospitals and doctors who performed the surgery. Claims against them for medical malpractice must be started before two years after the date of the surgery. Claims against the manufacturer, Intuitive Surgical, and other manufacturers involved are best started within the same two year period (even though the statute says four years) because it is likely the manufacturer will blame the hospitals and doctors. Claims against the marketers and training companies should also be brought within the two year period.

If the surgery resulted in death, then the claim for Wrongful Death must be started before the two year period ends.

Possible exceptions:

There are some exceptions that may extend the period to bring a claim beyond two years. It is best not to rely on these exceptions. You should bring your claim within two years from the date of the surgery.

How our law firm can help?

If anyone you know has any complications from a robotic arm medical procedure, please consult or law firm immediately. Time is of the essence. Our law firm help you get the recovery you deserve. During this difficult time we will help you receive the maximum compensation allowed by law and we will assist you through every step of the case. Our team of lawyers works with medical professionals, valuation experts, technical experts and other lawyers. If you or a loved one suffered an injury or a death please call us at 1-888-WE-MEAN-IT (1-888-936-3264) or email us at: info@brookslawgroup.com.

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