Priscila R Armijo, MD, Crystal Krause, PhD, Ka-Chun Siu, PhD, Dmitry Oleynikov, MD. University of Nebraska Medical Center
Introduction: The aim of this study was to determine to determine the impact and prevalence of musculoskeletal upper-limb disorders in surgeons performing open (OPEN), laparoscopic (LAP) and robotic-assisted (RA) procedures.
Methods: An anonymous REDCap survey was sent to the SAGES Committee Members and to all surgeons currently practicing at our institution. The survey included surgeon demographics, surgical focus, procedures performed, and years in practice. Our survey also included the validated QuickDASH (Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand) Questionnaire for upper-limb symptoms and the ability to perform certain physical activities. The QuickDASH is scored into two components: disability/symptom score, and the optional work module, which represent the impact of disability on daily activities and work responsibilities, respectively. Both scores range from 0-100, with a higher score indicating greater disability. Surgeons were grouped according surgical focus (OPEN, LAP, or RA), and comparisons were made between groups. Surveys with more than 10% of responses missing were excluded. Statistical analysis were done using SPSS 23.0, with α=0.05.
Results: 156 completed surveys were evaluated (OPEN: N=23, LAP: N=96, RA: N=37). The survey response rate was 50%. 76.9% of respondents were general surgeons, and mean age was 45±9.49 years. Surgeons reported an average of 30±16.7 cases performed per month, with a mean of 7.5±3.1 practicing years. Prevalence of pain in the upper limb was similar between groups (OPEN: 60.9%, LAP: 42.7%, RA: 51.4%, p=0.253). Likewise, there were no differences in the mean disability (OPEN: 3.95±4.6, LAP: 6.62±8.49, RA: 7.18±8.15, p=0.275) or mean work (OPEN: 1.08±4.06, LAP: 3.77±7.82, RA: 4.22±9.08, p=0.265) scores between groups. However, a positive correlation was seen between age and disability scores for LAP (p=0.034) and RA (p=0.042). Similarly, there was a positive correlation between mean work scores and reported pain in the upper-limb for LAP and RA, both p<0.001.
Conclusions: This nationwide survey revealed a similar prevalence of pain in the upper-limb among surgeons performing open, laparoscopic and robotic-assisted procedures. Likewise, similar disability scores were reported between the three surgical groups. Older surgeons performing laparoscopic and robotic-assisted approaches reported a higher impact of upper-limb problems interfering with their daily activities, unlike open surgeons. Among all surgeons who reported pain in the upper-limb, laparoscopic and robotic surgeons were more likely to report that this pain interferes with their work activities. Future studies will assess injuries in the neck and back of the surgeon, and evaluate its impact on the surgeon’s work.
Presented at the SAGES 2017 Annual Meeting in Houston, TX.
Abstract ID: 86860
Program Number: P768
Presentation Session: iPoster Session (Non CME)
Presentation Type: Poster