Formal robotic training diminishes the learning curve for robotic pancreatoduodenectomy: Implications for new programs in complex robotic surgery

Carl R. Schmidt, Britney R. Harris, Kelsey A. Musgrove, Pavan Rao, J. Wallis Marsh, Alan A. Thomay, Melissa E. Hogg, Herbert J Zeh, Amer H Zureikat, Brian A. Boone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: The learning curve associated with robotic pancreatoduodenectomy (RPD) is a hurdle for new programs to achieve optimal results. Since early analysis, robotic training has recently expanded, and the RPD approach has been refined. The purpose of this study is to examine RPD outcomes for surgeons who implemented a new program after receiving formal RPD training to determine if such training reduces the learning curve. Methods: Outcomes for consecutive patients undergoing RPD at a single tertiary institution were compared to optimal RPD benchmarks from a previously reported learning curve analysis. Two surgical oncologists with formal RPD training performed all operations with one surgeon as bedside assistant and the other at the console. Results: Forty consecutive RPD operations were evaluated. Mean operative time was 354 ± 54 min, and blood loss was 300 ml. Length of stay was 7 days. Three patients (7.5%) underwent conversion to open. Pancreatic fistula affected five patients (12.5%). Operative time was stable over the study and lower than the reported benchmark. These RPD operative outcomes were similar to reported surgeon outcomes after the learning curve. Conclusion: This study suggests formal robotic training facilitates safe and efficient adoption of RPD for new programs, reducing or eliminating the learning curve.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)375-380
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Surgical Oncology
Volume123
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2021

Keywords

  • learning curve
  • robotic curriculum
  • robotic pancreatectomy
  • robotic training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology

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