Live Surgery: a retrospective study on the outcomes and complications of 7 orthopedic live surgery events

Orthop Traumatol Surg Res. 2021 Feb 24;102871. doi: 10.1016/j.otsr.2021.102871. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: Live surgery has always been an invaluable part of medical education. Live Surgery Events (LSE) have recently been criticized in France, arguing that unnecessary risks have been placed on the patients.

Hypothesis: We want to report our experience in organizing the last 7 shoulder LSE over the past 12 years focusing on the results and complications during and after the surgeries performed during these courses.

Material and methods: 190 patients benefited from live shoulder surgery between 2005 and 2017. 11 of them were lost to follow up, thus 179 patients were included. The mean follow-up was 7,5 years for the instability group, 6,7 years for the rotator cuff group, 7,5 years for the arthroplasty group and 6,8 years for the nerve group. This study is a retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data. We report the epidemiology of the surgeries perfomed and analyzed the patient outcomes: peri and postoperative complications. We evaluated the educational benefit for the attendees of this shoulder LSE through a questionnaire.

Results: There were 6 (3.1%) peri or immediate postoperative complications. There were 33 (18%) long term complications needing 26 (14%) revisions. 90% of the surgeons audience attending the events evaluated the educational benefit from good to very good.

Discussion: Over the years, we have standardized the organization of the meeting to ensure maximum safety, while still respecting patient integrity and anonymity. Our complications rates seem within the ranges found in the current literature for each procedure. Our LSE has been an instrument for education, but also for matching patients with complex problems with experienced surgeons, to the benefit of the patient. Our experience has shown that LSE may induce potential dangers and complications can arise. However, these events should follow rigorous rules and not just recommendations.

Level of evidence: IV; retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data.