2021 Volume 64 Issue 3 Pages 240-248
Background Robotic surgery for rectal cancer is used worldwide, with an increasing incidence of robotic surgeons. Therefore, the most appropriate educational system for next-generation robotic surgeons should be urgently established.
Methods We analyzed 39 patients who underwent robotic rectal surgery performed by a next-generation surgeon with limited experienced in laparoscopic rectal cancer surgery. The dual console system was used in the initial 15 cases, and we assessed short-term outcomes and the learning curve on operative time using the cumulative sum method.
Results The patients were divided into two groups: 15 cases in the early phase, and 24 cases in the late phase. The operative time and surgeon console time were significantly shorter in the late phase than the early phase (P < 0.001). Postoperative complications were more frequently observed in the early phase (P = 0.049); however, the estimated blood loss and length of hospital stay were not significantly different. In the initial 15 cases that using the dual console, the average operative time changing to the expert surgeon was 82 minutes in the first 5 cases, 19 minutes on average in the next 5 cases, and no change occurred in the last 5 cases. The learning curve peaked after 14 cases, plateaued from case number 15 to 23, and decreased in a linear fashion until the final case.
Conclusion Education of a next generation surgeon using a dual console system for robotic rectal cancer surgery was performed safely.