Despite advances in colorectal surgery, anastomotic leaks continue to be a significant complication associated with considerable morbidity and patient suffering, as well as increased hospitalization and treatment costs.
Exploring Variability in Surgical Technique
The surgical training tool was informed by the findings of a Delphi survey1 conducted with approximately 300 surgeons who participated in the J&J Institute Colorectal Surgery Symposium in May. The first phase of the project used a live Delphi voting system to explore variability in surgical technique when undertaking anastomosis after right sided colorectal resection. At the ESCP annual meeting in September, Dr. Aneel Bhangu, Clinical Lecturer in Colorectal Surgery at the University of Birmingham, UK, presented the initial findings of the vote during a J&J Institute sponsored symposia. The findings identified high levels of expert agreement and those where consensus was subsequently achieved after the voting process.
Training to Reduce Variability in Care
The learnings from the Delphi voting project will be used to develop online training modules to help standardize surgical techniques for right sided anastomosis. At the symposia, Professor Dion Morton, the Barling Professor of Surgery at Birmingham University and the Chairman of the ESCP research committee, shared that the training modules are expected to be available in May 2019. He also discussed preliminary plans for the subsequent evaluation of the program’s effectiveness on surgical behavior and patient-level outcomes.
“Anastomotic failure is the major fear for patients undergoing bowel surgery. It is the primary responsibility of the colorectal surgery community to prioritize clinical research to minimize this adverse outcome for our patients,” said Professor Morton.
Ludwig Groebler, professional education manager, said that the J&J Institute is committed to delivering enhanced learning and training that will make a meaningful difference in the care of patients. “We believe that through research, education and innovation, we can work together to improve care for colorectal patients and reduce the costs of managing this serious complication.”
1 - The Delphi technique is suggested to be an effective way to gain and measure group consensus in healthcare. The approach uses a systematic fashion of repeating rounds, where each subsequent set of statements is built on the responses to the preceding ones.