da Vinci Surgical Robot Investor Lawsuit Alleges Misleading Statements by Intuitive Surgical

A lawsuit in California claims Intuitive Surgical, Inc., the maker of the da Vinci Surgical System, misled shareholders about defects with the robotic device, which has been linked to over 70 deaths and numerous other injuries.

The lawsuit, brought by the Public School Teachers’ Pension and Retirement Fund of Chicago, claims that Intuitive Surgical made false statements about the da Vinci system’s safety and misled shareholders about internally-known safety defects in the system that were injuring patients.  By concealing this information and misleading investors about the device’s safety, the shareholders claim Intuitive Surgical artificially inflated the company’s stock price over a number of years.  Once the negative information came to light, following an FDA investigation and numerous consumer lawsuits that, the stock price fell dramatically, revealing the fraud committed on shareholders.

The da Vinci surgical system was aggressively marketed to doctors and hospitals for years, securing its regular use in patient surgeries.  However, patients who underwent da Vinci surgeries complained of a variety of injuries including burns and perforations to internal organs occurring while the system’s tiny instruments were inside the patients’ bodies.  Intuitive Surgical allegedly underreported these injuries to the FDA.  However, as injury reports increased, the FDA began investigating the company in 2013 and discovered that Intuitive had received hundreds of reports of injuries caused by defects in the system as far back as 2009.  Despite stringent FDA rules requiring a device manufacturer to report such defects, Intuitive allegedly failed to properly report the da Vinci problems to the FDA.  The FDA also surveyed doctors as part of its investigation, which revealed further problems with the da Vinci system related to a lack of consistent surgeon training on the use of the system. The company also faces numerous product liability lawsuits from injured patients.

The da Vinci robotic system is sophisticated surgical device that uses a 3D high-definition camera and miniature instruments designed to allow doctors to make fewer, smaller and more precise incisions when performing surgery.  Despite being referred to as a “robotic” device, a doctor still performs the surgery.  The da Vinci system is a sophisticated instrument designed with “joint wristed” technology meant to give a doctor increased vision and control when performing surgeries.  It costs between $1 million and $2.3 million dollars for the equipment.

Essentially, the shareholder class action lawsuit accuses Intuitive Surgical defrauding investors by failing to properly disclose the safety defects associated with the da Vinci system and the incidence of patient injury reports.  By intentionally underreporting or concealing information about the system’s defects, Intuitive Surgical not only harmed patients, but also harmed its investors.  Rather than fully disclosing this information to the FDA and to its shareholders, Intuitive Surgical instead focused on increasing its profits.  The lawsuit also alleges that senior Intuitive executives also sold hundreds of thousands of their own personal shares, profiting handsomely, just before the negative information became public and the stock fell.

How Do I Get More Information?  

To learn more about da Vinci surgical robotic lawsuits, visit Audet and Partners website at http://www.http://davinci-surgical-robot-lawsuit.com.

If you, or a loved one, have experienced problems that may be related to a robotic surgery, contact the experienced attorneys at Audet and Partners, LLP for a free evaluation of your legal options.  Call us at (800) 965-1461 or fill out the confidential case inquiry form on the right side of this web page.

*Source: Markham, Isobel (2014, March 6); Retrieved from http://www.americanlawyer.com/id=1202645882264/Intuitive-Surgical-Shareholders-File-Suit-Over-System-Defects

Join a class action. Call us: 800.965.1461