Evaluation and Impact of Workflow Interruptions during Robot-assisted Surgery

Jenna C. Allers, Ahmed A. Hussein, Nabeeha Ahmad, Lora Cavuoto, Joseph F. Wing, Robin M. Hayes, Nobuyuki Hinata, Ann M. Bisantz, Khurshid A. Guru

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objective To analyze and categorize causes for interruptions during robot-assisted surgery. Methods We analyzed 10 robot-assisted prostatectomies that were performed by 3 surgeons from October 2014 to June 2015. Interruptions to surgery were defined in terms of duration, stage of surgery, personnel involved, reasons, and impact of the interruption on the surgical workflow. Results The main reasons for interruptions included the following: console surgeons switching (29%); preparation of the surgical equipment, such as cleaning or changing the camera (29%) or an instrument (27%); or when a suture, stapler, or clip was needed (12%). The most common interruption duration was 10-29 seconds (47.6%), and the least common interruption duration was greater than 90 seconds (3.6%). Additionally, about 14% of the interruptions were considered avoidable, whereas the remaining 86% of interruptions were necessary for surgery. Conclusion By identifying and analyzing interruptions, we can develop evidence-based strategies to improve operating room efficiency, lower costs, and advance patient safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-37
Number of pages5
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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