Training the next generation of robotic surgeons using guided mentorship: A randomized controlled trial

Margaret I. Liang, Georgia A. McCann, Kellie S. Rath, Floor J. Backes, Catherine Cansino, Ritu Salani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Study Objective: To evaluate the effect of expert guided mentorship on technical score and time for a set of robotic training drills. Design: Prospective randomized controlled trial (Canadian Task Force classification I). Setting: Academic institution. Subjects: Fifty trainees in robotic surgery. Intervention: Inexperienced trainees underwent either a 20-minute expert guided mentorship session or no intervention. The primary outcomes were technical score and time-to-drill completion for a set of dry lab robotic training drills evaluated at an initial and final skills assessment. The t-test, including paired analyses, was used to evaluate outcomes. Measurements and Main Results: Forty-nine of 50 trainees (98%) completed the study. There were no significant differences in participant characteristics or initial performance between the 2 groups. During the final skills assessment, the intervention group demonstrated significantly better performance on 1 of 8 objective measures. They had a higher mean score for the bead transfer drill when compared with the control group (21.6 vs 19.9; p=.03). No differences in time-to-drill completion were noted between the 2 groups. Regardless of randomization, all participants had significantly improved scores for each of the drills on the final compared with the initial skills assessment (p<.01). Conclusions: Although expert guided mentorship in a dry lab simulation environment seems feasible, further investigation is warranted before its widespread use because it may be more resource intensive than other teaching methods, without consistent objective improvements in technical performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1075-1079
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Guided mentorship
  • Robotic training
  • Surgical education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Training the next generation of robotic surgeons using guided mentorship: A randomized controlled trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this