James Lau, MD, MHPE, FACS is a general surgeon who specializes in minimally invasive and bariatric surgery. Clinically he specializes in the treatment of achalasia, esophageal reflux, gastroparesis, morbid obesity, and abdominal wall hernias. He performs surgeries through a myriad of techniques including: laparoscopic, robotic, open, and endoscopic platforms. He has been active in medical education at two different institutions since 2004 and has been at Stanford since 2009. He was the associate program director for the surgery residency and is the medical student surgery core clerkship director at the Stanford School of Medicine. He created a simulation center and program for the Department of Surgery at the University of Nevada School of Medicine 12 years ago from the ground up. Upon his arrival to Stanford, he positioned the Goodman Surgical Education Center and the Education Fellowship to new heights of curricular and research rigor. He serves as a mentor for the surgical education fellows and is the champion for many medical education initiatives for the Department of Surgery at Stanford. Since becoming the Assistant Dean for Clerkship Education for the Stanford School of Medicine, he has made improving the educational environment for medical students and coordinating support and guidance for the struggling student his mission. Dr. Lau’s research interests have culminated into the creation, deployment, and assessment of interdisciplinary in-situ simulations in the Operating Room environment to improve patient safety through teamwork and communication. James completed his Master’s Degree in 2016 in Health Professions Education from the University of Illinois Chicago in order to better serve as an educational mentor for faculty, fellows, residents, and medical students. His passion is to empower others to reach their potential through teaching and mentorship especially through innovation in any form it takes.
- Surgical Procedures, Minimally Invasive
- Esophageal Reflux - LINX
- Achalasia - POEM - Endoscopic Approach
- Bariatric Surgery
- Inguinal Hernias - Robotic, Laparoscopic, and Open
- Abdominal Hernias - Robotic, Laparoscopic, and Open
- Gastric Pacemaker for Gastroparesis
- General Surgery
- Gastrointestinal Surgery, Endoscopic
- Esophageal Reflux
- Hernias, Paraesophageal Hiatal
- Esophageal Achalasia
- Abdominal Hernias
- Single Incision Laparoscopic Surgery
- Gastric Bypass
- Sleeve Gastrectomy
- Trauma Surgery
Assistant Dean for Clerkship Education, Stanford School of Medicine (2015 - Present)
Director, Stanford Surgery ACS Education Institute/Goodman Surgical Education Center, Stanford Department of Surgery (2011 - Present)
Director, Surgical Education Fellowship, Stanford Department of Surgery (2011 - Present)
Director, Core Clerkship in Surgery, Stanford School of Medicine (2011 - Present)
Honors & Awards
John Austin Collins, MD Memorial Teaching Award, Department of Surgery, Stanford School of Medicine (2018)
Award for Excellence in Promotion of Humanism, Stanford School of Medicine (2018)
Arthur L. Bloomfield Award in Recognition of Excellence in the Teaching of Clinical Medicine, Stanford School of Medicine (2018)
Membership in the Academy of Clerkship Directors in Surgery, Association for Surgical Education (2018)
2016 Best Master's Health Professions Education Thesis, Department of Medical Education, University Of Illinois Chicago (2017)
The Alwin C. Rambar-James BD Mark Award for Excellence in Patient Care, Stanford School of Medicine (2017)
2016 – Surgery Chief Residents’ Award, Department of Surgery, Stanford School of Medicine (2016)
Franklin G. Ebaugh, Jr. Award for Excellence in Advising Medical Students, Stanford School of Medicine (2016)
2015 Phillip J. Wolfson Outstanding Teacher Award, Association for Surgical Education (2015)
Award for Excellence in the Promotion of the Learning Environment and Student Wellness, Stanford School of Medicine (2014)
Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Teaching Award for Clerkship Instruction, Stanford School of Medicine (2014)
John Austin Collins, MD Memorial Teaching Award, Department of Surgery, Stanford School of Medicine (2012)
John Austin Collins, MD Memorial Teaching Award, Department of Surgery, Stanford School of Medicine (2010)
Poster of Distinction, SAGES Annual Meeting at Las Vegas, Nevada (2007)
Faculty Teaching Award, Department of Surgery at University of Nevada School of Medicine, Las Vegas, Nevada (2006)
Special Recognition for Teaching, Department of Surgery at University of Nevada School of Medicine, Las Vegas, Nevada (2005)
Meritorious Service Medal, United States Air Force (2003)
Surgical Socrates Award, Department of Surgery Indiana University Medical Center Indianapolis, Indiana (2002)
Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations
Bariatric Surgery Training Committee, American Society of Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery (2014 - Present)
Associate Program Director Committee, Association for Program Directors in Surgery (2016 - Present)
Surgery Clerkship Committee, Association for Surgical Education (2012 - Present)
Curriculum Committee Member, American College of Surgeons Education Institutes (ACS-EI) (2012 - Present)
Master's Degree, University of Illinois Chicago, Health Professions Education (2016)
Fellowship:Stanford University Medical Center (2007) CA
Board Certification: General Surgery, American Board of Surgery (2003)
Residency:Indiana University Medical Center GME Verifications (2002) IN
Internship:Loyola University Medical Center (1996) IL
Medical Education:Loyola Univ Of Chicago Stritch (1995) IL
Bachelor's Degree, University of CA, San Diego, Bio-Engineering (1990)
Community and International Work
Healthy Connections Pre-Medical Student Volunteer Program, Webster House Health Center
Clinical Exposure to Pre-Health Volunteers
Webster House Health Center
Geriatric and Skilled Nursing Facility Residents
Opportunities for Student Involvement
Healthy Options for Prevention and Education, Las Vegas, Nevada
Childhood Obesity Prevention
University of Nevada School of Medicine
Opportunities for Student Involvement
Christopher Stevens Pell, Bryan J. Duggan, Hattie Zhi Chen Dong, Thomas Ruby, John Avi Roop, Jonathan B. Ticker, James N. Lau, Kevin Chao. "United States Patent 9861272 Apparatus, sustems, and methods for performing laparoscopic surgery", The Board of Trustess of the Leland Stanford Junior University, Jan 9, 2018
Current Research and Scholarly Interests
We live in an exciting time of new techniques in minimal surgical access. These techniques are being practiced in basic as well as more advanced general surgical procedures. Controlled studies of outcomes comparing standard approaches to these newer ones are the only way to validate these evolving and possibly less painful and less morbid open techniques.
The education of surgeons has been changing from a mentorship skills acquisition model towards a simulation first approach. The variety of methods to convey medical knowledge and technical prowess must be honed to provide the future surgeons with the most effective education in a world with more time constraints. Studies that explore new ways to improve standard education of surgical residents as well as novel approaches to teaching technical, team dynamics, and crisis management skills are essential toward the goal of producing a caring and skilled physician.
The educational environment for medical students and residents has changed. Because of this, a more comprehensive and systematic inter-disciplinary approach is essential to adapt to the learning styles of modern trainees. Programs of education must be innovative in scope and practice. Evaluation of novel programs qualitatively and quantitatively ensure these robust curricula accomplish the task of conveying knowledge and skills efficiently.
Teamwork and communication remain important, yet under emphasized, concepts in our complex clinical practices. Superior patient care as shown by improved outcomes are the result of interdisciplinary team training. Promoting this behavioral culture in large tertiary institutions require new educational methods. Simulation training, as part of a comprehensive large scale blended learning model cross disciplines can yield improved patient care outcomes. Studies to prove this are necessary in program implementation through maintenance.
InterCEPT - Interprofessional Communicaion Education Project in Teamwork, Stanford Health Care
Monthly interprofessional in-situ simulation and debriefs as team training in the Stanford main operating room and ambulatory surgery center as part of standard work. Patient Safety, quality improvement, and culture change.
300 pasteur drive stanford ca
- Clinical Teaching Seminar Series
SURG 257 (Aut, Win, Spr, Sum)
- Introduction to Surgery
SURG 204 (Aut)
- Service Through Surgery: Surgeons with an Impact
SURG 234 (Win)
- Technical Training and Preparation for the Surgical Environment
SURG 205 (Aut)
- Independent Studies (5)
Prior Year Courses
- Introduction to Surgery
SURG 204 (Aut)
- Technical Training and Preparation for the Surgical Environment
SURG 205 (Aut)
- Introduction to Surgery
Determining the educational value of a technical and nontechnical skills medical student curriculum.
The Journal of surgical research
2018; 225: 157–65
Residency application rates to general surgery remain low. The purpose of this study is to describe the educational value of a curriculum designed to increase preclinical medical student interest in surgical careers to better understand the process by which medical students decide to pursue a career in surgery.We used qualitative methodology to describe the educational value of a technical and nontechnical skills curriculum offered to preclinical medical students at our institution. We conducted semistructured interviews of students and instructors who completed the curriculum in 2016. The interviews were recorded, transcribed, and inductively coded. The data were analyzed for emergent themes.A total of eight students and five instructors were interviewed. After analysis of 13 transcripts, four themes emerged: (1) The course provides a safe environment for learning, (2) acquisition and synthesis of basic technical skills increases preclinical student comfort in the operating room, (3) developing relationships with surgeons creates opportunities for extracurricular learning and scholarship, and (4) operative experiences can inspire students to explore a future career in surgery.These factors can help inform the design of future interventions to increase student interest, with the ultimate goal of increasing the number of students who apply to surgical residency programs.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jss.2018.01.002
View details for PubMedID 29605027
Medical student perceptions of a mistreatment program during the surgery clerkship.
American journal of surgery
Medical student mistreatment remains a concern, particularly in the surgery clerkship. This is a single academic institution's report of medical student perceptions of a mistreatment program embedded in the surgery clerkship.Students who completed the surgery clerkship and the mistreatment program volunteered to be interviewed individually or in focus groups. The interviews were transcribed and qualitatively analyzed.Twenty-four medical students were interviewed and nine transcripts were obtained. Codes were identified independently then nested into four codes: Student Growth, Faculty Champion and Team, Student Perspectives on Surgical Culture, and Program Methods. Rank orders were then calculated for each major code.Our mistreatment program has shown that providing students with an opportunity to define mistreatment, a safe environment for them to debrief, and staff to support and advocate for them empowers them with the knowledge and skillset to confront what is too often considered part of the hidden curriculum.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2018.01.001
View details for PubMedID 29395030
A Call for Mixed Methods in Competency-Based Medical Education: How We Can Prevent the Overfitting of Curriculum and Assessment.
Academic medicine : journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges
Competency-based medical education (CBME) has been the subject of heated debate since its inception in medical education. Despite the many challenges and pitfalls of CBME that have been recognized by the medical education community, CBME is now seeing widespread implementation. However, the biggest problems with CBME still have not been solved. Two of these problems, reductionism and loss of authenticity, present major challenges when developing curricula and assessment tools.The authors address these problems by making a call for flexibility in competency definitions and for the use of mixed methods in CBME. First, they present the issue of reductionism and a similar concept from the field of data science, overfitting. Then they outline several solutions, both conceptual and concrete, to prevent undue reductionist tendencies in both competency definitions and in tools of assessment. Finally, they propose the re-introduction of qualitative methods to balance the historically quantitative emphasis of assessment in medical education.The authors maintain that mixed-methods assessment with multiple assessors in differing contexts can yield a more accurate representation of a medical trainee's skills and abilities, deter the loss of authenticity, and increase the willingness of medical educators to adopt a feasible form of CBME. Finally, they propose the deployment of dedicated faculty assessors and physician coaches (which will reduce training requirements for other faculty), as well as the use of formal qualitative tools of assessment alongside established quantitative tools, to encourage a truly mixed-method approach to assessment.
View details for DOI 10.1097/ACM.0000000000002205
View details for PubMedID 29517532
- Evaluating the Impact of Blinded vs Non-Blinded Interviews on the General Surgery Resident Selection Process ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC. 2017: S174–S175
- A Multi-Institutional, Qualitative Interview Study Investigating Attrition and Retention Resident Experiences Affecting the Decision to Complete General Surgery Training ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC. 2017: S170
Prevalence and predictors of depression among general surgery residents.
American journal of surgery
2017; 213 (2): 313-317
Recent resident suicides have highlighted the need to address depression among medical trainees. This study sought to identify the prevalence and predictors of depression among surgical residents.Surgical residents at a single institution were surveyed. Depression and personal traits were assessed using validated measures; participant demographics were also obtained.73 residents completed the survey (response rate 63%). 36% met criteria for at least mild depression, of which 20% met criteria for moderate to severe depression. In multivariate linear regression analyses controlling for demographic factors, trait emotional intelligence alone was a significant inverse predictor of depression (β = -0.60, p < 0.001).Depression is prevalent among general surgery residents. Identifying protective factors and at-risk populations may allow for effective initiatives to be developed to address depression, and optimize the mental health of trainees.The aim of this study is to identify the prevalence and predictors of depression among surgical trainees. Over one third of respondents met criteria for at least mild depression, of which 20% met criteria for moderate to severe depression. Among demographic and personal trait variables, emotional intelligence emerged as a significant inverse predictor of depression.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2016.10.017
View details for PubMedID 28017297
Grit as a predictor of risk of attrition in surgical residency.
American journal of surgery
2017; 213 (2): 288-291
Grit, a measure of perseverance, has been shown to predict resident well-being. In this study we assess the relationship between grit and attrition.We collected survey data from residents in a single institution over two consecutive years. All residents in general surgery were invited to participate (N = 115). Grit and psychological well-being were assessed using validated measures. Risk of attrition was measured using survey items.73 residents participated (63% response rate). Grit was positively correlated with general psychological well-being (r = 0.30, p < 0.05) and inversely correlated with depression (r = -0.25, p < 0.05) and risk of attrition (r = -0.37, p < 0.01). In regression analyses, grit was positively predictive of well-being (B = 0.77, t = 2.96, p < 0.01) and negatively predictive of depression (B = -0.28 t = -2.74, p < 0.01) and attrition (B = -0.99, t = -2.53, p < 0.05).Attrition is a costly and disruptive problem in residency. Grit is a quick, reliable measure which appears to be predictive of attrition risk in this single-institution study.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2016.10.012
View details for PubMedID 27932088
A Mixed-Methods Analysis of a Novel Mistreatment Program for the Surgery Core Clerkship.
To review mistreatment reports from before and after implementation of a mistreatment program, and student ratings of and qualitative responses to the program to evaluate the short-term impact on students.In January 2014, a video- and discussion-based mistreatment program was implemented for the surgery clerkship at the Stanford University School of Medicine. The program aims to help students establish expectations for the learning environment; create a shared and personal definition of mistreatment; and promote advocacy and empowerment to address mistreatment. Counts and types of mistreatment were compared from a year before (January-December 2013) and two years after (January 2014-December 2015) implementation. Students' end-of-clerkship ratings and responses to open-ended questions were analyzed.From March 2014-December 2015, 141/164 (86%) students completed ratings, and all 47 (100%) students enrolled from January-August 2014 provided qualitative program evaluations. Most students rated the initial (108/141 [77%]) and final (120/141 [85%]) sessions as excellent or outstanding. In the qualitative analysis, students valued that the program helped establish expectations; allowed for sharing experiences; provided formal resources; and provided a supportive environment. Students felt the learning environment and culture were improved and reported increased interest in surgery. There were 14 mistreatment reports the year before the program, 9 in the program's first year, and 4 in the second year.The authors found a rotation-specific mistreatment program, focused on creating shared understanding about mistreatment, was well received among surgery clerkship students, and the number of mistreatment reports decreased each year following implementation.
View details for DOI 10.1097/ACM.0000000000001575
View details for PubMedID 28121657
Pilot evaluation of the Computer-Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics test.
The Journal of surgical research
2017; 215: 211–18
High attrition rates hint at deficiencies in the resident selection process. The evaluation of personal characteristics representative of success is difficult. Here, we evaluate a novel tool for assessing personal characteristics.To evaluate feasibility, we used an anonymous voluntary survey questionnaire offered to study participants before and after contact with the CASPer test. To evaluate the CASPer test as a predictor of success, we compared CASPer test assessments of personal characteristics versus traditional faculty assessment of personal characteristics with applicant rank list position.All applicants (n = 77) attending an in-person interview for general surgery residency, and all faculty interviewers (n = 34) who reviewed these applications were invited to participate. Among applicants, 84.4% of respondents (65 of 77) reported that a requirement to complete the CASPer test would have no bearing or would make them more likely to apply to the program (mean = 3.30, standard deviation = 0.96). Among the faculty, 62.5% respondents (10 of 16) reported that the same condition would have no bearing or would make applicants more likely to apply to the program (mean = 3.19, standard deviation = 1.33). The Spearman's rank-order correlation coefficients for the relationships between traditional faculty assessment of personal characteristics and applicant rank list position, and novel CASPer assessment of personal characteristics and applicant rank list position, were -0.45 (P = 0.033) and -0.41 (P = 0.055), respectively.The CASPer test may be feasibly implemented as component of the resident selection process, with the potential to predict applicant rank list position and improve the general surgery resident selection process.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jss.2017.03.054
View details for PubMedID 28688650
Leaders by example: Best practices and advice on establishing a state-of-the art surgical simulation center that optimizes available resources.
American journal of surgery
The role of simulation-based education continues to expand exponentially. To excel in this environment as a surgical simulation leader requires unique knowledge, skills, and abilities that are different from those used in traditional clinically-based education.Leaders in surgical simulation were invited to participate as discussants in a pre-conference course offered by the Association for Surgical Education. Highlights from their discussions were recorded.Recommendations were provided on topics such as building a simulation team, preparing for accreditation requirements, what to ask for during early stages of development, identifying tools and resources needed to meet educational goals, expanding surgical simulation programming, and building educational curricula.These recommendations provide new leaders in simulation with a unique combination of up-to-date best practices in simulation-based education, as well as valuable advice gained from lessons learned from the personal experiences of national leaders in the field of surgical simulation and education.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2017.11.007
View details for PubMedID 29174772
Underlying mechanisms of mistreatment in the surgical learning environment: A thematic analysis of medical student perceptions.
American journal of surgery
Medical students experience more psychological distress than the general population. One contributing factor is mistreatment. This study aims to understand the mechanisms of mistreatment as perceived by medical students.Students completed anonymous surveys during the first and last didactic session of their surgery clerkship in which they defined and gave examples of mistreatment. Team-based thematic analysis was performed on responses.Between January 2014 and June 2016, 240 students participated in the surgery clerkship. Eighty-nine percent of students completed a survey. Themes observed included (1) Obstruction of Students' Learning, (2) Exploitation of Student Vulnerability, (3) Exclusion from the Medical Team, and (4) Contextual Amplifiers of Mistreatment Severity.The themes observed in this study improve our understanding of the students' perspective on mistreatment as it relates to their role in the clinical learning context, which can serve as a starting point for interventions that ultimately improve students' experiences in the clinical setting.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2017.10.042
View details for PubMedID 29167023
Evaluation of a technical and nontechnical skills curriculum for students entering surgery.
The Journal of surgical research
2017; 219: 92–97
Prior interventions to address declining interest in surgical careers have focused on creating early exposure and fostering mentorship at the preclinical medical student level. Navigating the surgical environment can be challenging, however, and preclinical students may be more likely to pursue a surgical career if they are given the tools to function optimally.We designed a 10-wk technical and nontechnical skills curriculum to provide preclinical students with knowledge and skills necessary to successfully navigate the surgical learning environment, followed by placement in high-fidelity surgical simulations and scrubbing in on operative cases with attending surgeons. We administered pre-post surveys to assess student confidence levels in operative skills, self-perceptions of having a mentor, overall course efficacy, and interest in a career in surgery.The overall response rates presurvey and postsurvey were 100% (30 of 30) and 93.3% (28 of 30), respectively. Confidence levels across all operative skills increased significantly after completing the course. Faculty mentorship increased significantly from 30.0% before to 61.5% after the course. Overall effectiveness of the course was 4.00 of 5 (4 = "very effective"), and although insignificant, overall interest in a career in surgery increased at the completion of the course from 3.77 (standard deviation = 1.01) to 4.17 (standard deviation = 0.94).Our curriculum was effective in teaching the skills necessary to enjoy positive experiences in planned early exposure and mentorship activities. Further study is warranted to determine if this intervention leads to an increase in students who formally commit to a career in surgery.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jss.2017.05.105
View details for PubMedID 29078916
Student perceptions of a simulation-based flipped classroom for the surgery clerkship: A mixed-methods study.
2016; 160 (3): 591-598
The flipped classroom, a blended learning paradigm that uses pre-session online videos reinforced with interactive sessions, has been proposed as an alternative to traditional lectures. This article investigates medical students' perceptions of a simulation-based, flipped classroom for the surgery clerkship and suggests best practices for implementation in this setting.A prospective cohort of students (n = 89), who were enrolled in the surgery clerkship during a 1-year period, was taught via a simulation-based, flipped classroom approach. Students completed an anonymous, end-of-clerkship survey regarding their perceptions of the curriculum. Quantitative analysis of Likert responses and qualitative analysis of narrative responses were performed.Students' perceptions of the curriculum were positive, with 90% rating it excellent or outstanding. The majority reported the curriculum should be continued (95%) and applied to other clerkships (84%). The component received most favorably by the students was the simulation-based skill sessions. Students rated the effectiveness of the Khan Academy-style videos the highest compared with other video formats (P < .001). Qualitative analysis identified 21 subthemes in 4 domains: general positive feedback, educational content, learning environment, and specific benefits to medical students. The students reported that the learning environment fostered accountability and self-directed learning. Specific perceived benefits included preparation for the clinical rotation and the National Board of Medical Examiners shelf exam, decreased class time, socialization with peers, and faculty interaction.Medical students' perceptions of a simulation-based, flipped classroom in the surgery clerkship were overwhelmingly positive. The flipped classroom approach can be applied successfully in a surgery clerkship setting and may offer additional benefits compared with traditional lecture-based curricula.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.surg.2016.03.034
View details for PubMedID 27262534
Emotional Intelligence as a Predictor of Resident Well-Being.
Journal of the American College of Surgeons
2016; 223 (2): 352-358
There is increasing recognition that physician wellness is critical; it not only benefits the provider, but also influences quality and patient care outcomes. Despite this, resident physicians suffer from a high rate of burnout and personal distress. Individuals with higher emotional intelligence (EI) are thought to perceive, process, and regulate emotions more effectively, which can lead to enhanced well-being and less emotional disturbance. This study sought to understand the relationship between EI and wellness among surgical residents.Residents in a single general surgery residency program were surveyed on a voluntary basis. Emotional intelligence was measured using the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire-Short Form. Resident wellness was assessed with the Dupuy Psychological General Well-Being Index, Maslach Burnout Inventory, and Beck Depression Inventory-Short Form. Emotional intelligence and wellness parameters were correlated using Pearson coefficients. Multivariate analysis was performed to identify factors predictive of well-being.Seventy-three residents participated in the survey (response rate 63%). Emotional intelligence scores correlated positively with psychological well-being (r = 0.74; p < 0.001) and inversely with depression (r = -0.69, p < 0.001) and 2 burnout parameters, emotional exhaustion (r = -0.69; p < 0.001) and depersonalization (r = -0.59; p < 0.001). In regression analyses controlling for demographic factors such as sex, age, and relationship status, EI was strongly predictive of well-being (β = 0.76; p < 0.001), emotional exhaustion (β = -0.63; p < 0.001), depersonalization (β = -0.48; p = 0.002), and depression (β = -0.60; p < 0.001).Emotional intelligence is a strong predictor of resident well-being. Prospectively measuring EI can identify those who are most likely to thrive in surgical residency. Interventions to increase EI can be effective at optimizing the wellness of residents.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2016.04.044
View details for PubMedID 27182037
Novel Use of Google Glass for Procedural Wireless Vital Sign Monitoring.
2016; 23 (4): 366-373
This study investigates the feasibility and potential utility of head-mounted displays for real-time wireless vital sign monitoring during surgical procedures.In this randomized controlled pilot study, surgery residents (n = 14) performed simulated bedside procedures with traditional vital sign monitors and were randomized to addition of vital sign streaming to Google Glass. Time to recognition of preprogrammed vital sign deterioration and frequency of traditional monitor use was recorded. User feedback was collected by electronic survey.The experimental group spent 90% less time looking away from the procedural field to view traditional monitors during bronchoscopy (P = .003), and recognized critical desaturation 8.8 seconds earlier; the experimental group spent 71% (P = .01) less time looking away from the procedural field during thoracostomy, and recognized hypotension 10.5 seconds earlier. Trends toward earlier recognition of deterioration did not reach statistical significance. The majority of participants agreed that Google Glass increases situational awareness (64%), is helpful in monitoring vitals (86%), is easy to use (93%), and has potential to improve patient safety (85%).In this early feasibility study, use of streaming to Google Glass significantly decreased time looking away from procedural fields and resulted in a nonsignificant trend toward earlier recognition of vital sign deterioration. Vital sign streaming with Google Glass or similar platforms is feasible and may enhance procedural situational awareness.
View details for DOI 10.1177/1553350616630142
View details for PubMedID 26848138
Effectiveness of the Surgery Core Clerkship Flipped Classroom: a prospective cohort trial
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF SURGERY
2016; 211 (2): 451-U214
The flipped classroom has been proposed as an alternative curricular approach to traditional didactic lectures but has not been previously applied to a surgery clerkship.A 1-year prospective cohort of students (n = 89) enrolled in the surgery clerkship was taught using a flipped classroom approach. A historical cohort of students (n = 92) taught with a traditional lecture curriculum was used for comparison. Pretest and post-test performance, end-of-clerkship surveys, and National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) scores were analyzed to assess effectiveness.Mean pretest and post-test scores increased across all modules (P < .001). There was no difference between mean NBME examination score in the prospective and historical cohorts (74.75 vs 75.74, P = .28). Mean ratings of career interest in surgery increased after curriculum completion (4.75 to 6.50, P < .001), with 90% reporting that the flipped classroom contributed to this increase.Implementation of a flipped classroom in the surgery clerkship is feasible and results in high learner satisfaction, effective knowledge acquisition, and increased career interest in surgery with noninferior NBME performance.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2015.10.004
View details for Web of Science ID 000368344800023
Mesenteric defect closure in laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass: a randomized controlled trial.
2015; 29 (9): 2486-2490
Internal herniation is a potential complication following laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGB). Previous studies have shown that closure of mesenteric defects after LRYGB may reduce the incidence of internal herniation. However, controversy remains as to whether mesenteric defect closure is necessary to decrease the incidence of internal hernias after LRYGB. This study aims to determine if jejeunal mesenteric defect closure reduces incidence of internal hernias and other complications in patients undergoing LRYGB.105 patients undergoing laparoscopic antecolic RYGB were randomized into two groups: closed mesenteric defect (n = 50) or open mesenteric defect (n = 55). Complication rates were obtained from the medical record. Patients were followed up to 3 years post-operatively. Patients also completed the gastrointestinal quality of life index (GI QoL) pre-operatively and 12 months post-operatively. Outcome measures included: incidence of internal hernias, complications, readmissions, reoperations, GI QoL scores, and percent excess weight loss (%EWL).Pre-operatively, there were no significant differences between the two groups. The closed group had a longer operative time (closed-153 min, open-138 min, p = 0.073). There was one internal hernia in the open group. There was no significant difference at 12 months for decrease in BMI (closed-15.9, open-16.3 kg/m(2), p = 0.288) or %EWL (closed-75.3%, open-69.0%, p = 0.134). There was no significant difference between the groups in incidence of internal hernias and general complications post-operatively. Both groups showed significantly improved GI QoL index scores from baseline to 12 months post-surgery, but there were no significant differences at 12 months between groups in total GI QoL (closed-108, open-112, p = 0.440).In this study, closure or non-closure of the jejeunal mesenteric defect following LRYGB appears to result in equivalent internal hernia and complication rates. High index of suspicion should be maintained whenever internal hernia is expected after LRYGB.
View details for DOI 10.1007/s00464-014-3970-3
View details for PubMedID 25480607
Validity evidence for Surgical Improvement of Clinical Knowledge Ops: a novel gaming platform to assess surgical decision making
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF SURGERY
2015; 209 (1): 79-85
Current surgical education curricula focus mainly on the acquisition of technical skill rather than clinical and operative judgment. SICKO (Surgical Improvement of Clinical Knowledge Ops) is a novel gaming platform developed to address this critical need. A pilot study was performed to collect validity evidence for SICKO as an assessment for surgical decision making.Forty-nine subjects stratified into 4 levels of expertise were recruited to play SICKO. Later, players were surveyed regarding the realism of the gaming platform as well as the clinical competencies required of them while playing SICKO.Each group of increasing expertise outperformed the less experienced groups. Mean total game scores for the novice, junior resident, senior resident, and expert groups were 5,461, 8,519, 11,404, and 13,913, respectively (P = .001). Survey results revealed high scores for realism and content.SICKO holds the potential to be not only an engaging and immersive educational tool, but also a valid assessment in the armamentarium of surgical educators.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2014.08.033
View details for Web of Science ID 000346121100013
View details for PubMedID 25454955
What is the future of training in surgery? Needs assessment of national stakeholders
2014; 156 (3): 707-717
The Curriculum Committee of the American College of Surgeons-Accredited Educational Institutes conducted a need assessment to (1) identify gaps between ideal and actual practices in areas of surgical care, (2) explore educational solutions for addressing these gaps, and (3) shape a vision to advance the future of training in surgery.National stakeholders were recruited from the committee members' professional network and interviewed via telephone. Interview questions targeted areas for improving surgical patient care, optimal educational solutions for training in surgery including simulation roles, and entities that should primarily bear training costs. We performed an iterative, qualitative analysis including member checking to identify key themes.Twenty-two interviewees included state/national board representatives, risk managers, multispecialty faculty/program directors, nurses, trainees, an industry representative, and a patient. Surgeons' communication with patients, families, and team members was raised consistently by stakeholders as a way to establish clear expectations regarding pre-, peri-, and postoperative care. Other comments highlighted the surgeon's development and demonstration and maintenance of cognitive and technical skills, including surgical judgment. Stakeholders also reiterated the critical need for surgeons to engage in on-going self-assessment and professional development to identify and remediate recognized limitations. Recommended learning modalities for meeting surgeons' needs included active learning (deliberate practice, diverse patient experiences), experiential learning (simulation), and peer and mentored learning (preceptorship).This first formal needs assessment of education for surgeons points to opportunities for educational programs in patient-centered communication, learning models that match preferences of new generations of trainees, and training in interprofessional/interdisciplinary team communication and teamwork.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.surg.2014.04.047
View details for Web of Science ID 000341228200028
View details for PubMedID 25175505
- PREDICT: Instituting an Educational Time Out in the Operating Room. Journal of graduate medical education 2014; 6 (2): 382-383
Comparison of robotic and laparoendoscopic single-site surgery systems in a suturing and knot tying task
SURGICAL ENDOSCOPY AND OTHER INTERVENTIONAL TECHNIQUES
2013; 27 (9): 3182-3186
BACKGROUND: Laparoendoscopic single-site (LESS) surgery has been established for various procedures. Shortcomings of LESS surgery include loss of triangulation, instrument collisions, and poor ergonomics, making advanced laparoscopic tasks especially challenging. We compared a LESS system with a robotic single-site surgery platform in performance of a suturing and knot-tying task under clinically simulated conditions. METHODS: Each of five volunteer minimally invasive surgeons was tasked with suturing a 5 cm longitudinal enterotomy in porcine small intestine with square knots at either end, using a laparoendoscopic or da Vinci robotic single-site surgery platform, within a 20 min time limit. A saline leak test was then performed. Each surgeon performed the task twice using each system. The time to completion of the task and presence of a leak were noted. Fisher's exact test was used to compare the overall completion rate within the defined time limit, and a Wilcoxon rank test was used to compare the specific times to complete the task. A p value of <0.05 was considered significant. RESULTS: All surgeons were able to complete the task on the first try within 20 min using the robot system; 60 % of surgeons were able to complete it after two attempts using the LESS surgery system. Time to completion using the robot system was significantly shorter than the time using the standard LESS system (p < 0.0001). There were no leaks after closure with the robot system; the leak rate following the standard LESS system was 90 %. CONCLUSIONS: Surgeons demonstrated significantly better suturing and knot-tying capabilities using the robot single-site system compared to a standard LESS system. The robotic system has the potential to expand single-site surgery to more complex tasks.
View details for DOI 10.1007/s00464-013-2874-y
View details for Web of Science ID 000323621500016
View details for PubMedID 23443484
The assessment of emotional intelligence among candidates interviewing for general surgery residency.
Journal of surgical education
2013; 70 (4): 514-521
There is an increasing demand for physicians to possess strong personal and social qualities embodied in the concept of emotional intelligence (EI). However, the residency selection process emphasizes mainly academic accomplishments. In this system, the faculty interview is the primary means of evaluating the nontangible, nonacademic attributes of a candidate.To determine whether the impressions derived from faculty interviews correlate with an applicant's actual EI as measured by a validated objective instrument.Participating applicants interviewing for a surgical residency position at Stanford completed an EI inventory Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire (TEIQue). Faculty estimated the EI of the applicants they interviewed using a corresponding 360° evaluation form. Multivariate linear regression was performed to identify demographic and academic factors predictive of EI. Applicant TEIQue scores and faculty 360° impressions were correlated using Pearson coefficients.Mean EI of the cohort was higher than that of the average population (5.43 vs 4.89, p<0.001). Age was the only demographic variable that significantly informed EI (B = 0.07, p = 0.005). Among the academic factors considered, United States Medical Licensing Examination Step 1 score was a slight negative predictor of EI (B =-0.007, p = 0.04). Applicant global EI scores did not correlate with faculty impressions of overall EI (r = 0.27, p = 0.06). Of the 4 domains that comprise global EI, sociability and emotionality demonstrated a moderate correlation between applicant and faculty scores (r = 0.31, p = 0.03 and r = 0.27, p = 0.05, respectively). None of the fifteen individual facets of EI demonstrated any correlation between applicant and faculty ratings (r =-0.12 to 0.26, p = 0.06-0.91). No association was found between applicant TEIQue and traditional faculty interview evaluations (r = 0.18, p = 0.19).Applicant EI correlated poorly with academic parameters and was not accurately assessed by faculty interviews. Methods that better capture this dimension should be incorporated into the residency selection process.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jsurg.2013.03.010
View details for PubMedID 23725940
- Hemobilia from Transjugular Liver Biopsy Resulting in Gallbladder Rupture DIGESTIVE DISEASES AND SCIENCES 2013; 58 (3): 630-633
Recurrent abdominal liposarcoma: Analysis of 19 cases and prognostic factors.
World journal of gastroenterology : WJG
2013; 19 (25): 4045–52
To evaluate the clinical outcome of re-operation for recurrent abdominal liposarcoma following multidisciplinary team cooperation.Nineteen consecutive patients who had recurrent abdominal liposarcoma underwent re-operation by the retroperitoneal sarcoma team at our institution from May 2009 to January 2012. Patient demographic and clinical data were reviewed retrospectively. Multidisciplinary team discussions were held prior to treatment, and re-operation was deemed the best treatment. The categories of the extent of resection were as follows: gross total resection (GTR), palliative resection and partial resection. Surgical techniques were divided into discrete lesion resection and combined contiguous multivisceral resection (CMR). Tumor size was determined as the largest diameter of the specimen. Patients were followed up at approximately 3-monthly intervals. For survival analysis, a univariate analysis was performed using the Kaplan-Meier method, and a multivariate analysis was performed using the Cox proportional hazards model.Nineteen patients with recurrent abdominal liposarcoma (RAL) underwent 32 re-operations at our institute. A total of 51 operations were reviewed with a total follow-up time ranging from 4 to 120 (47.4 ± 34.2) mo. The GTR rate in the CMR group was higher than that in the non-CMR group (P = 0.034). CMR was positively correlated with intra-operative bleeding (correlation coefficient = 0.514, P = 0.010). Six cases with severe postoperative complications were recorded. Patients with tumor sizes greater than 20 cm carried a significant risk of profuse intra-operative bleeding (P = 0.009). The ratio of a highly malignant subtype (dedifferentiated or pleomorphic) in recurrent cases was higher compared to primary cases (P = 0.027). Both single-factor survival using the Kaplan-Meier model and multivariate analysis using the Cox proportional hazards model showed that overall survival was correlated with resection extent and pathological subtype (P < 0.001 and P = 0.02), however, relapse-free interval (RFI) was only correlated with resection extent (P = 0.002).Close follow-up should be conducted in patients with RAL. Early re-operation for relapse is preferred and gross resection most likely prolongs the RFI.
View details for DOI 10.3748/wjg.v19.i25.4045
View details for PubMedID 23840151
The Effect of Positive and Negative Verbal Feedback on Surgical Skills Performance and Motivation
Annual Spring Meeting of the Association-for-Program-Directors-in-Surgery (APDS)
ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC. 2012: 798–801
There is considerable effort and time invested in providing feedback to medical students and residents during their time in training. However, little effort has been made to measure the effects of positive and negative verbal feedback on skills performance and motivation to learn and practice. To probe these questions, first-year medical students (n = 25) were recruited to perform a peg transfer task on Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery box trainers. Time to completion and number of errors were recorded. The students were then randomized to receive either positive or negative verbal feedback from an expert in the field of laparoscopic surgery. After this delivery of feedback, the students repeated the peg transfer task. Differences in performance pre- and post-feedback and also between the groups who received positive feedback (PF) vs negative feedback (NF) were analyzed. A survey was then completed by all the participants. Baseline task times were similar between groups (PF 209.3 seconds; NF 203 seconds, p = 0.58). The PF group averaged 1.83 first-time errors while the NF group 1 (p = 0.84). Post-feedback task times were significantly decreased for both groups (PF 159.75 seconds, p = 0.05; NF 132.08 seconds, p = 0.002). While the NF group demonstrated a greater improvement in mean time than the PF group, this was not statistically significant. Both groups also made fewer errors (PF 0.33 errors, p = 0.04; NF 0.38 errors, p = 0.23). When surveyed about their responses to standardized feedback scenarios, the students stated that both positive and negative verbal feedback could be potent stimulants for improved performance and motivation. Further research is required to better understand the effects of feedback on learner motivation and the interpersonal dynamic between mentors and their trainees.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jsurg.2012.05.012
View details for Web of Science ID 000311024100021
View details for PubMedID 23111049
- Informed Consent SAGES MANNUAL OF QUALITY, OUTCOMES AND PATIENT SAFETY 2012: 521–28
Potential Nutritional Conflicts in Bariatric and Renal Transplant Patients
2011; 21 (12): 1965-1970
An increasing number of morbidly obese patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD) are sequentially undergoing bariatric surgery followed by renal transplantation. Discrepancies between the nutritional recommendations for obesity and chronic kidney disease (CKD) are often confusing for the obese patient in renal failure. However, when recommendations are structured according to stage and treatment of disease, a consistent plan can be clearly communicated to the patient. Therefore, to optimize patient and graft outcomes we present nutritional recommendations tailored to three patient populations: obese patients with ESRD, patients post Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGBP) with ESRD, and patients post RYGBP and post renal transplantation.
View details for DOI 10.1007/s11695-011-0423-0
View details for Web of Science ID 000297201700023
View details for PubMedID 21526378
Another Use of the Mobile Device: Warm-up for Laparoscopic Surgery
JOURNAL OF SURGICAL RESEARCH
2011; 170 (2): 185-188
An important facet of laparoscopic surgery is its psychomotor component. As this aspect of surgery gains attention, lessons from other psychomotor-intense fields such as athletics have led to an investigation of the benefits of "warming up" prior to entering the operating room. Practical implementation of established methods of warm-up is hampered by a reliance on special equipment and instrumentations that are not readily available. In light of emerging evidence of translatability between video-game play and operative performance, we sought to find if laparoscopic task performance improved after warming up on a mobile device balance game.Laparoscopic novices were randomized into either the intervention group (n = 20) or the control group (n = 20). The intervention group played a mobile device balance game for 10 min while the control group did no warm-up whatsoever. Assessment was performed using two tasks on the ProMIS laparoscopic simulation system: "object positioning" (where small beads are transferred between four cups) and "tissue manipulation" (where pieces of plastic are stretched over pegs). Metrics measured were time to task completion, path length, smoothness, hand dominance, and errors.The intervention group made fewer errors: object positioning task 0.20 versus 0.70, P = 0.01, tissue manipulation task 0.15 versus 0.55, P = 0.05, total errors 0.35 versus 1.25, P = 0.002. The two groups performed similarly on the other metrics.Warm-up using a mobile device balance game decreases errors on basic tasks performed on a laparoscopic surgery simulator, suggesting a practical way to warm-up prior to cases in the operating room.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jss.2011.03.015
View details for Web of Science ID 000295128600013
View details for PubMedID 21529831
The role of functional endoscopic sinus surgery in asthmatic patients
JOURNAL OF OTOLARYNGOLOGY
1998; 27 (5): 275-280
This study was conducted to determine the efficacy of FESS (functional endoscopic sinus surgery) on sinus and asthma symptoms.Seventy-nine patients with asthma and medically unresponsive sinusitis were evaluated. Maximal medical therapy was attempted to relieve both sinus and asthma symptoms. The surgical procedures involved standard FESS techniques. Fifty-six percent of patients had undergone a sinus procedure prior to the FESS. Nasal polyposis was noted in 73% of the group. The majority of patients had pansinusitis.Eighty-six percent of patients stated that FESS improved their sinusitis. Nine of 11 sinus symptoms recorded preoperatively diminished significantly (p < .05) following surgery. Eighty percent of patients noted improvement of their asthma following FESS. The factors associated with treatment failure and the unique characteristics of this disease process were evaluated.FESS is a viable option in the treatment of asthma when medical therapy fails.
View details for Web of Science ID 000076536200006
View details for PubMedID 9800626