Is Robotic Surgery All Hype and No Substance?


I am unable to contain myself for another minute. Let’s talk about robotic surgery. This is from How Stuff Works, a Discovery Company, but it could have been written by the makers of the surgical robot: “Most surgeries require nearly a dozen people in the room. As with all automation, surgical robots will eventually eliminate the need for some personnel.” This is another example of a “straw man.” Just about all operations require five people—surgeon, assistant, scrub nurse, circulating nurse, anesthesiologist. Some... Read More

DaVinci robot: “a pseudo-innovation — increases costs without improving patients’ health”

Davinci Surgical Robot

Recently, MedPageToday reported on a paper presented at the American Urological Association annual meeting: “Robotic-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) cost 60% more than an open procedure, a difference driven primarily by higher operating-room costs, according to data from one large medical center. On average, robotic procedures cost $6,000 more than open procedures, and the hospital lost approximately $4,000 on each robotic procedure. The robotic technique accounted for 60% of the total cost of each RARP, Jeffrey Tomaszewski, MD, reported here at the American Urological Association meeting. Read... Read More