Dr_Esquire t1_iz338wr wrote

The post-residency training is still training. For people like surgeons whose baseline residencies are already very long, without getting into the medical field pushing for fellowship post-residency, any extra time is often a bigger investment than it seems.

Also, "intensive" training can be fine as catch up, but (if I had to guess) probably depends on users having some baseline understanding and ability with the machines. A 40yo who never touched one like will feel pretty wonky at the controls and a 1-3 month course likely wont fully fix that. Also, again, comfort needs to be there; you cant just use a machine to do surgery if youre not super comfortable with your mastery of it.


Dr_Esquire t1_iz11ye6 wrote

The problem with these robots is that they are mega expensive. This results in other related problems. Namely, A hospital cannot buy a lot of them. This means that the surgical residents at these hospitals can only log so many hours on the machine (at places Ive trained, it was mostly reserved for senior residents. So training is limited. Hospitals also cant really afford to have two different brands, and residents also dont really have time to learn two different brands. So again, training becomes limited.

Why is this a problem? Because training in surgery is massively important. Stuff has to become so second nature that unexpected issues need to be semi-familiar or at least things you can deal with since the main issues are happening almost in the background of your head. So by making training so difficult, it actually limits the usefulness of these robots as you have fewer people who can allocate time (sufficient time) to learn one, and even fewer that can allocate time to learn more than one.

As a total aside, Im not in surgery, so take with grain of salt, but I dont see the actual present day utility of these machines. Every robotic Ive observed in school was basically something you could do in probably half the time manually. I could very well be missing the nuances and underestimating problems that arise with manual vs robotic. And it also could be a more preparing for the future, when these machines are more useful and need ready users. But as they currently stand, I dont get the hype about robitic surgeries.