We spoke to Marcos Gómez Ruiz to learn more about what we can expect from the next in our four-part Robotic Surgery Webinar Series: From Basic Skills to Fine Art.

Dr Gómez Ruiz is a member of the steering committee on the ESCP Colorectal Robotic Surgery Working Group. He is an internationally renowned expert minimally invasive and robotic surgeon at the Marqués de Valdecilla University Hospital and an experienced proctor in robotic surgery.

Why is robotic surgery an important topic in the field of colorectal surgery?

Robotic surgery is gaining acceptance and interest in the colorectal field. Many colorectal surgeons across Europe are considering starting a robotic surgery program in their hospitals as they understand that this approach could have potential benefits for the treatment of colorectal diseases - mainly, but not only, for Total Mesorectal Excision (TME) and Complete Mesocolic Excision (CME) procedures.

What are the key themes/talking points to note?

During this second webinar we will be touching on two different themes:

  1. General concepts in colorectal robotic surgery: Basic understanding on how this technology is used during colorectal procedures (docking of the system, use of energy, for example) as well as how it is used during the learning curve (orientation).
  2. Sigmoid resection and splenic flexure mobilisation: Sigmoid resections are the first recommended procedures to be done as colorectal surgeons start to learn how to practice robotic surgery. Mobilizing the splenic flexure can be a difficult step, especially during the first few times surgeons perform these procedures. During this webinar we will focus on the why, the how and the tips and tricks for robotic splenic flexure mobilisation.

Why is the session important to attend - and who will benefit most from attending?

These sessions (ESCP Colorectal Robotic Surgery Webinar Series) intend to teach the foundations of colorectal robotic surgery, covering basic concepts, but they also progress to explore tips and tricks in complex procedures, so they should be of interest to many. This second webinar sets the scene for the following sessions in this four-part series, explaining the general concepts that will be useful before attendees are trained in more complex procedures. During this session we will also explain in detail how to mobilise the splenic flexure during a sigmoid resection, or a LAR procedure, to inform future sessions.

Any surgeon who is starting their colorectal robotic surgery training, or who is considering starting it, should attend this session.

Can you share any further points of interest regarding setting up a safe and efficient robotic surgery programme? What are the key considerations?

While setting up a safe and efficient colorectal robotic surgery program, it is key to understand the specificities of robotic instruments, how to use them in a safe way (lack of tactile feedback can be an issue, for example) and how should they be applied and used in the colorectal field. This will be explored during the general concept presentation done by Marek. Carmen will be speaking about how to mobilize the flexure during a sigmoid resection. This is part of a modular training system that we think will help surgeons to better understand the approach and to do these procedures in a safer way.

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