Modular Training in Laparoscopic Colorectal Surgery Maximizes Training Opportunities without Clinical Compromise
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Laparoscopic surgery is increasingly proposed as the gold standard technique for colorectal resections and is offered to greater numbers of patients. To meet the rising service demands, more trainees and established consultants need to learn the technique. We sought to establish whether it is feasible and safe to train on a large proportion of patients without adversely affecting clinical outcome or smooth running of clinical service.
Between September 2006 and July 2008, four senior trainees of the Wessex Specialist Registrar training rotation were involved in training in laparoscopic colorectal surgery. Major colorectal resections were separated into clearly defined modules for training purposes. Right and left hemicolectomies each comprised two modules, and low anterior resection comprised three modules. Prospective data on consecutive patients undergoing laparoscopic colorectal surgery were collected. Data included type of surgery, module of procedure performed by trainee or trainer, body mass index (BMI), conversion rates, median operative time, complications, length of hospital stay, and mortality.
During the study period 227 colorectal resections were attempted laparoscopically. Of these, 216 (96%) proved suitable for training and 97% were completed laparoscopically. Some 23% of patients were American Society of Anesthesiologists score (ASA) ≥3; 35% had a BMI ≥28; 38% had a history of previous laparotomy. Trainees performed 96% (142/148) of right hemicolectomy modules, 99% (154/156) of left hemicolectomy modules, and 67% (128/192) of rectal resection modules. Each trainee was competent to do right and left hemicolectomy at the end of the training period. Four patients (2%) required further surgery for postoperative complications. Of the procedures completed by the trainees, 155/171 (91%) cancer resections were potentially surgically curative, and R0 resections were achieved in 99%. The readmission rate was 10% (22/216) and median length of hospital stay was 4 days. Postoperative mortality was zero.
Using a modular approach it is possible to provide effective training during almost all laparoscopic colorectal resections while achieving good clinical outcomes for the patients.
KeywordsColorectal Resection Rectal Resection Cancer Resection Laparoscopic Colorectal Resection Laparoscopic Training
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