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Por quê a Intuitive Surgical, fabricante do cirurgião-robô Da Vinci, é uma das empresas que mais crescem nos EUA?

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A Intuitive Surgical é certamente uma das empresas mais instigantes que já pesquisei, um absurdo o que ela já alcançou, é o tipo de empresa que vale a pena citar numa rodinha de amigos, porquê o que ela já conquistou é impressionante! Nascida de um projeto para o exército em Stanford, os pesquisadores perceberam o enorme potencial deste mercado e decidiram fundar a empresa, que em 2000 realizou um IPO, com uma nova oferta em 2003. Desde então, a empresa já instalou mais de 1.840 unidades, com resultados que indicam menores complicações cirúrgicas, menor tempo de internação e recuperação mais rápida do paciente. Nos EUA, já é a primeira opção para histerectomia e cirurgia ginecológica, bem como a preferência para os pacientes com câncer de próstata.

Atualmente no Brasil, esta cirurgia é realizada para pacientes particulares, nos hospitais Sírio Libânes, Einstein e Osvaldo Cruz. Nos últimos anos, a empresa tem aparecido consistentemente na lista das empresas que mais crescem nos EUA, tendo ficado em 2010 com o 21°lugar. O mais impressionante é que a empresa NÃO tem concorrentes hoje à altura. Todas as outras empresas estão anos-luz atrasadas. Será que esta foi a única companhia que percebeu a oportunidade de realizar cirurgias robóticas minimente invasivas ?! Onde estavam GE, Philips, Toshiba ? Preocupadss em produzir Ressonâncias Magnéticas de 32 para 64 canais? Existe uma grande diferença entre a inovação disruptiva e as melhoras incrementais de um ramo de negócio!

Neste momento, você percebe claramente a importância de ter Universidades como Stanford em que a Ciência caminha ao lado do Capital de Risco e os cientistas saem das Universidades para perseguir boas idéias de negócios. Afinal, por quê apenas publicar, se é possível realizar ?

Quem é a empresa  Intuitive Surgical, fabricante do Cirurgião Robô Da Vinci ?

A Intuitive Surgical é a líder global de cirurgia robótica minimamente invasiva.

O protótipo original para o Sistema Intuitive Surgical da Vinci foi desenvolvido no final de 1980 no antigo Instituto de Pesquisa Stanford sob contrato com o Exército dos EUA. Embora o trabalho inicial foi financiada no interesse de desenvolver um sistema para a realização de cirurgia de campo de batalha à distância, possíveis aplicações comerciais foram ainda mais atraentes.  Ficou claro para os envolvidos que esta tecnologia poderia acelerar a aplicação de uma abordagem cirúrgica minimamente invasiva para uma gama mais ampla de procedimentos.

Em 1995, a Intuitive Surgical foi fundada para testar esta teoria. Em janeiro de 1999, intuitiva lançou o sistema da Vinci Surgical, e em 2000, tornou-se o primeiro sistema robótico cirúrgico aprovado pela FDA para uso geral em cirurgia laparoscópica. Nos anos seguintes,o FDA aprovou o sistema  o da Vinci Surgical para cirurgia toracoscópica, procedimentos cardíacos realizados com incisões adjuvante, urológicas, ginecológicas, pediátricas e procedimentos de otorrinolaringologia transoral. Em Junho de 2000, Intuitive Surgical concluiu uma oferta inicial pública bem-sucedida. Esta foi seguido por uma bem-sucedida oferta pública segundo em 2003. Em 2003, a empresa também adquiriu seu principal concorrente, Motion Computer, fortalecendo suas participações de propriedade intelectual.

Hoje, mais de 1.840 Sistemas da Vinci estão instalados em mais de 1.450 hospitais no mundo inteiro. Em 31 de março de 2011, Intuitive Surgical possuia  mais de 870 patentes nos EUA e exterior, bem como mais de 990 pedidos de patentes pendentes nos EUA.

Além de desenvolver as suas próprias tecnologias proprietárias, Intuitive Surgical estabeleceu relações com vários líderes da indústria, incluindo IBM Corporation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), da Universidade Johns Hopkins (JHU) e, Heartport Inc. (Johnson & Johnson). A Companhia também entrou em colaborações com empresas da indústria, incluindo Ethicon Endo-Surgery (Johnson & Johnson), Inovações Luna, Intervenções poder médico, Medicina Teleflex, InTouch Health, Stryker, Novadaq e Mimic.

Sediada em Sunnyvale, Califórnia, Intuitive Surgical tem mais de 1.729 funcionários em escritórios no mundo todo. Intuitive Surgical encerrou o primeiro trimestre de 2011 com caixa, equivalentes de caixa e investimentos de US $ 1,8 bilhões, aumento de 388 milhões dólares a partir de 31 de março de 2010. No primeiro trimestre de 2011 o lucro operacional aumentou para U $ 148 milhões, comparado com US$ 130 milhões para o primeiro trimestre de 2010.

O sistema da Vinci é a # 1 opção para histerectomia minimamente invasivas nos Estados Unidos, a # 1 opção de tratamento cirúrgico para as mulheres diagnosticadas nos EUA com EUA câncer ginecológico, e é o tratamento preferencial dos homens com câncer de próstata.

Fonte: Intuitive Surgical

Veja vídeo explicativo sobre o robô-cirurgião Da Vinci:

Fastest-Growing’s rising stars: Intuitive Surgical

FORTUNE — Robotic surgery is one of the hottest sectors in the global health care industry right now, and Intuitive Surgical (No. 21) has a corner on it. Intuitive sells million-dollar robotic systems that allow surgeons to remove tumors and suture skin by watching a high-definition video feed from a camera inside the patient while using a joystick and pedals to guide tiny scalpels and needles attached to flexible robotic arms.

At first glance that might seem like the perfect metaphor for the U.S. health care industry, with its high technology driving runaway costs. But what if the opposite were true? Gary Guthart, CEO of the company, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., argues that his technology saves everybody money in the long run. The surgeries are less invasive, so patients go home and return to work earlier. There are fewer complications, which reduces cost overruns for hospitals, private insurers, and the government. “The economics of computing the implications are pretty complex, but we think it benefits society,” says Guthart, 44, a robotics expert who helped develop the basic technology for computer-assisted surgery as a researcher at SRI International in the early 1990s.

It has certainly benefited Intuitive, which earned $290 million on sales of $1.2 billion last year and increased revenue by an average of nearly 41% a year from 2007 to 2009. Intuitive (ISRG) has no significant competition as a provider of computer-assisted surgical technology, which is widely used today for minimally invasive cardiac and urological procedures and could potentially transform most forms of surgery. “In our view they’ve got a decade’s worth of technological lead,” says Les Funtlayder, a health care strategist at investment firm Miller Tabak, based in the New York City. “We don’t see too many gating factors to continued growth, other than the initial cost of the machines.”

A growing body of clinical evidence supports Guthart’s economic argument. Dr. Rakesh Suri is a cardiovascular surgeon at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. He and his partner, Dr. Harold Burkhart, have performed more than 200 mitral valve repair procedures using Intuitive’s da Vinci surgical system. Suri’s patients leave the hospital after three days on average, vs. five to seven days for open-chest patients. Most robot-assisted surgery patients are back at work after two to four weeks, compared with six to eight weeks for open-chest patients. Over the first 100 surgeries, average cost declined by 5% to 10% compared with conventional open-chest surgery. Suri cautions, however, that robotic surgery is not currently appropriate for “redo” procedures and certain clinical conditions. “We’re not in this for showmanship,” he says.

One downside risk for Intuitive is that surgeons who aren’t thoroughly trained on the system can hurt patients. At Mayo and other top hospitals, surgeons train extensively on animals and cadavers before they use the da Vinci system on real patients. But early this year a woman patient sued a New Hampshire hospital and two surgeons who botched her hysterectomy using a da Vinci system. The suit alleges that the surgeons were insufficiently trained on the system. Intuitive was not named in the suit and seems unlikely to face either legal or financial consequences.

So is expensive health care really cheap? While the evidence suggests that the da Vinci system really does lower surgical costs in the longer term, it’s less clear that high technology by itself can reduce skyrocketing costs across the U.S. health care system. Worst case for Intuitive and its shareholders: Health care gets more expensive, and the company makes even more money. To top of page

Fonte: Fortune, 18/08/2010

Robots grab chunk of prostate surgery biz

Intuitive Surgical’s ramping up sales of robotic surgical arms – and so far is alone in a $600 million market.

By Aaron Smith, CNNMoney.com staff writer
March 23 2007: 12:15 PM EDT

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — In a packed lecture hall at Cornell University, Dr. Ash Tewari recently showed a 3D video of a robotic claw surgically removing a prostate, as medical professionals watched stoically and reporters squirmed in their seats.

On the screen’s blown-up image, the initials of the robot’s maker – Intuitive Surgical (down $0.28 to $120.38,Charts) – were clearly etched onto the surface of the diminutive claws. Dr. Tewari, cancer specialist and director of robotic prostate surgery at Cornell, believes that surgery performed with Intuitive Surgical’s robot claws is safer and quicker than the human hand, resulting in less bleeding, with less problems of incontinence and impotence during recovery.

 Based in Sunnyside, Calif., Intuitive Surgical makes human-guided robotic arms that help doctors perform some of the most common and delicate procedures – the removal of a cancerous prostate gland or uterus – but only for those hospitals with enough money and the right manpower.

These areas of the healthcare market – estimated at $600 million last year by Wachovia analyst Michael Matson – are rapidly growing, fueled by an aging U.S. population. Intuitive Surgical has already experienced a rapid uptick in the use of its three and four-armed da Vinci robots, with a 56 percent sales surge in 2006 to $112 million. Its stock is up 12 percent year-to-date.

Robotic removal of the prostate has been a “big home run” for Intuitive Surgical, said Tao Levy, analyst for Deutsche Bank North America. “By the end of the year, over half of the prostates that are going to be removed in the U.S. are going to be done robotically.”

In 2006, 35 percent of the 90,000 prostatectomies and 2 percent of the 250,000 hysterectomies in the U.S. were performed by Intuitive Surgical’s robots, according to Charles Olsziewski, analyst for Oppenheimer.

The prostate gland is a small organ just below the bladder that makes fluid for semen. Hysterectomy is removal of the uterus, the major female reproductive organ in humans.

Medical companies take ‘Fantastic Voyage’ into heart

“The number of [robotic] procedures started to increase as the side effects were taken away,” said Olsziewski. He said the market penetration for robotic prostatectomies has tripled since 2004, primarily because robotic surgery causes less complications from bleeding, incontinence and impotence compared to other procedures.

Intuitive Surgical has a monopoly on robotic surgical arms.

Even if Japanese companies like Hitachi (down $0.90 to $74.36, Charts) make good on their promises to produce robotic arms for surgery, their potential products are years away, analysts say. So that leaves the robotic field to Intuitive Surgical in this part of the surgery market, where it still competes against hospitals and physicians conducting traditional open surgeries by hand, and the lesser-used laparoscopies, with tools provided by Johnson & Johnson (down $0.43 to $60.43, Charts), Olympus Corp. and Tyco (Charts).

Despite the benefits of robotic surgery, stealing market share away from these other procedures isn’t going to be easy. Not every hospital is willing to pay $1.5 million for the newest da Vinci robot, or to recruit, train and keep the proper specialists to run the device.

“The chief obstacle is the commitment that the hospital has to make to robotic procedures,” said Timothy Nelson of Piper Jaffray, noting that influential doctors need to pull together a team of talented surgeons and technicians. “The successful programs are the ones that get a team together. If the commitment isn’t there, it doesn’t work.”

But analysts believe that hospitals will have to take on the new technology eventually to remain competitive.

“[The da Vinci] is expensive, but at the end of the day it’s allowing the hospital to do better surgery,” said Levy of Deutsche Bank North America. “Also, hospitals without the device run the risk of losing business to those who have it.”

The analysts quoted here do not own shares of Intuitive Surgical stock, but Piper Jaffray, Deutsche Bank and Oppenheimer make a market in the company.

Fonte: Fortune, 23/05/2007


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