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US FDA evaluates safety of robotic surgical devices

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is evaluating the safety of Intuitive Surgical's robotic surgical devices.

Currently, the agency is studying a small group of surgeons who use the surgical device, which is used in over 2,000 hospitals worldwide, reports Financial Times.

Surgeons can carry out operations with the help of cameras and remote control. Used in heart, urological and gynaecological operations, the da Vinci system provides doctors with a feel of touch and vision of three dimensional nature while performing a surgery. However, the device cannot be programmed to perform surgeries on its own.

The FDA is currently evaluating the risks and benefits associated with the robotic surgery compared with the traditional surgery.

As doctors may not be in direct touch with their patients, the risk associated with the robotic surgery is high, the opponents of the technology claim.

The da Vinci device was introduced in 1999. Robotics is an area of growing interest in the field of medicine.

Intuitive spokeswoman told Financial Times that the inquiry is routine and there has been no increase in deaths or problems associated with its surgical equipment.