Future of SurgeryESCP’s Research Chair, Dion Morton, has taken part in a report on behalf of The Commission on the Future of Surgery which explores the advances that will transform surgery over the next 20 years.

Established by the Royal College of Surgeons, the research group is made up of the country’s leading doctors, engineers, data experts, managers, and patient representatives.

Due to increasing changes in digital technology and our evolving understanding of human biology, the report predicts surgery is about to be transformed for millions of patients.

The way surgeons are trained will evolve, diseases could be diagnosed by blood samples instead of invasive biopsies; 'well' patients will undergo earlier and, in some cases, preventive operations; and hundreds of thousands of patients across the world may no longer need to undergo some cancer operations due to advances in genomics, vaccination, and non-surgical treatments.

The report finds that we can confidently expect surgery to become much less invasive and more personalised, with more predictable outcomes, faster recovery times and a lower risk of harm. Big data, genomics, artificial intelligence, robotics and minimally-invasive surgery, specialised interventions, imaging, virtual reality and augmented reality are just some of the ongoing innovations we can expect to transform surgery.

Dion MortonDion Morton, Chair of the ESCP Research Committee, said:

"It was a great honour to take part in this report with esteemed colleagues. This is an incredibly exciting time in coloproctology as we look forward to transformative changes in colorectal surgery that will not only greatly improve patient care, but will also help to prevent recurrent illness.

"From virtual reality to robotics, several advances will revolutionise both the way surgeons are trained and surgical procedures are performed and we can collectively look forward to pioneering these developments over the coming years."

The full report can be viewed here: https://futureofsurgery.rcseng.ac.uk

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