The Surgery of Tomorrow is Here Today

Social Media, Virtual Reality, Telementoring and the Changing the Face Surgery

At the SAGES 2017 Meeting, March 22nd– 25th in Houston, TX

The Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES) continues to strive to improve quality patient care in minimally invasive surgery (MIS).  The Society’s annual meeting this March will highlight how social media, virtual reality simulation and telementoring have enhanced both patient and physician experience. These modern technologies and other medical advancements in the field of MIS have helped to make procedures less painful and substantially improve the patient experience after surgery  in a variety of conditions. “SAGES is Home: Collaborate, Communicate, Connect” will be held March 22-25 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston.

Social media platforms are now venues widely used by surgeons to stay up-to-date on current literature and to discuss diagnostic dilemmas. SAGES Board Member and Founder of the International Hernia Collaboration (IHC) Dr. Brian Jacob will present a keynote lecture on “Social Media and Health Care” at the meeting. In an effort to help optimize patient outcomes after hernia repair, in 2012 Dr. Jacob launched the IHC, a private Facebook™ group that has now grown to over 2500 hernia surgeons and hernia industry partners. He believes there is significant power in large focused professional networks like the IHC, and expects that they should continue to grow. , Based on this novel and successful initiative, SAGES has contributed to start other similar groups which most likely will rapidly change the way medical information is disseminated and exchanged,  thus improving  the care we bring to our patients.

Through telementoring, doctors across the country are able to train other surgeons and collaborate with each other from a distance. This improves proficiency  in minimally invasive surgery and patient care overall. SAGEShas been at the forefront of establishing best practices in telementoring and strategizing recommendations for future directions in this field.  The aim is to accelerate the rate at which minimal invasive surgery is adopted and will be available to patients. “Coaching and Telementoring in the Global Arena,” chaired by SAGES Board Member Dr. Allen Okrainec at the SAGES meeting, will cover technical logistics, real life practices, and emerging technologies that utilize telementoring for training, mentoring and coaching.

Simulation and the use of virtual reality technology has heightened the quality of training opportunities for surgeons,while also resulting in improved outcomes.  For example, this past year, passing the SAGES Fundamentals of Endoscopic Surgery exam – which includes virtual reality simulation to help measure a surgeon’s skill level – became a requirement for graduating surgical residents. Additional SAGES 2017 meeting highlights showcasing the impact of virtual reality, telementoring, social media and other technological innovation will include:

 Wednesday March 22, 2017

  • The Impact of Social Media on Adoption of Robotic Hernia Repair – Brian Jacob, MD, 11:00AM in Ballroom A/B
  • Simulation Based Mastery Learning for Endoscopy – Matthew Ritter, MD, 3:10 PM in Room 320
  • Symposium: Coaching and Telementoring in the Global Arena – Chair: Allan E. Okrainec, MD, 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM in Room 320

Thursday, March 23, 2017:

  • Keynote “Why It Pays To Be Likeable”Speaker: Dave Kerpen, #1 LinkedIn Influencer, 9:00 AM – 9:45 AM in Ballroom A/B
  • Keynote “Social Media and Health Care”Speaker: Brian P. Jacob, MD, 9:45 AM – 10:15 AM in Ballroom A/B
  • SAGES Stories: Controversies in Foregut Surgery – Honest Discussions from Expert Surgeons: Chair: Brian Dunkin, MD | Co-Chair: Steven Schwaitzberg, MD | | This unique session will have world leaders in the management of foregut disease present real clinical controversies TED style. Each speaker will share patient stories to explore the management of debated foregut issues such as POEM versus Heller for achalasia and paraesophageal hernia repair in the elderly. Following each presentation, the audience will have the opportunity to interact with the presenters and moderators in a relaxed atmosphere to explore each topic in greater detail. 1:30 PM – 3:30 PM in Room 342
  • Symposium: International Hernia Collaboration Symposium – Chair: Igor Belyansky, MD, 3:30 PM – 5:30 in Room 342

Friday, March 24, 2017:

  • Keynote “Presidential Address” – Speaker: Daniel J. Scott, 8:30 AM – 9:15 am in Ballroom B
  • Panel: Robotic Surgery – New Platforms and Strategies to Overcome the Learning Curve – This session will focus on simulation, augmented virtual reality, procedure specific modules and team training. Chair: Omar Yusef Kudsi, MD, MBA, 4:30 PM – 5:30 PM in Room 320
  • Impact of Social Media on the Robotic Learning Curve (24/7) – Adrian P. Martin, MD, 4:40 PM in Ballroom A/B
  • SS26 Education Technology, Teaching and Learning -This session will focus on the role of YouTube in surgical education, telementoring and the SAGES Foregut Surgery Collaboration as a social media resource for surgeons. Moderator: Santiago Horgan, MD, 4:30 PM – 5:30 PM Room 322

Saturday, March 25, 2017:

  • SAGES Mini Medical SchoolIn this session, 100 high school students from the Houston area will learn about the field of surgery through lecture and video-game simulation. Chair: James Rosser Jr. MD, 7:30 AM to 2:00 PM in Room 322B
  • Shark Tank: SAGES/AGA Joint Session – This forum is geared toward innovators and companies interested in pitching and improving novel concepts, non-FDA approved devices, and new non-marketing indications. Chair: Jeffrey Marks, MD, 8:00AM to 9:30AM in Room 322
  • Emerging Technology Session This session features the latest and newest techniques and technologies in gastrointestinal and endoscopic surgery. Abstracts submitted by physicians, industry engineers, scientists and researchers are carefully selected to showcase cutting-edge new research and emerging technologies. Many revolutionary surgical innovations were first introduced at this session. Chair: Kevin Wasco, MD, 9:30 -11:30 in Room 322

For more information about the 2017 meeting visit or download the SAGES 2017 Meeting App from the Apple App Store, the Google Play Store or as a native Kindle Fire App.

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