Minimally Invasive New Technology in Oncologic Surgery (MINTOS) seeks to identify, develop, and integrate into practice effective new technologies that enhance the care of patients with cancer.
MINTOS is comprised of multidisciplinary surgeons from the Division of Surgery at MD Anderson. The program was established in 2006 and is led by a multidisciplinary Board of Directors in collaboration with the Medical Director, Surena Matin, M.D.
The major efforts of the MINTOS program focus on four broad areas:
Robotic Surgery and related Clinical Operations: MD Anderson uses the Da Vinci® robotic surgery system, which has four robotic arms. Although the robotic arms are doing the actual surgery, they still require direct input from the surgeon and cannot be merely programmed to operate without human intervention. Candidates for robotic-assisted surgery include patients undergoing prostatectomy, hysterectomy, thoracic procedures and some general surgeries.
Surgical Education: The MINTOS Annual Education and Laboratory Course integrates disciplines of oncologic surgery and develops a forum where participants will receive hands-on training in basic techniques and principles of laparoscopic and robotic surgery, as well as updates on new technology in minimally invasive surgery.
Research: Research is central to achieving our mission of eliminating cancer through surgical excellence and multidisciplinary collaboration that fosters discovery, innovation and optimal patient care. MINTOS is concurrently researching the utility of new surgical robotic techniques and mobile technologies at each point along the surgical spectrum of care.
Perioperative Telemedicine™: The focus of Perioperative Telemedicine™ is to advance the utilization of telemedicine throughout the continuum of the perioperative experience – before surgery (preoperative), during surgery (intraoperative) and after surgery (postoperative). The overall goal is extend our capacity to provide specialized surgical care to underserved areas of Texas.
The goal of the annual Education and Laboratory Course is to integrate disciplines of oncologic surgery and develop a forum where participants receive hands-on training in basic techniques and principles of laparoscopic and robotic surgery, as well as updates on new technology in minimally invasive surgery. The course is only offered to MD Anderson surgical trainees, fellows, and faculty.
- Teach basic fundamental principles of ultrasound, energy, tissue dissection and vascular control for organ specific advanced laparoscopic and robotic techniques
- Orient trainees to surgical simulator tasks and register them for task mastering skills
- Discuss the latest technological advances and tools used in minimally invasive surgical resection of tumors
- Demonstrate the latest applications of minimally invasive techniques currently used by faculty at MD Anderson
The MINTOS Education and Laboratory course combines didactics, videos, simulators and hands-on training. A video learning session provides updates on the latest technological advances in the tools and techniques used in laparoscopic and robotic surgery at MD Anderson.
Organ/disease-specific didactics gives the trainees an opportunity to gain more extensive information on the application and fundamentals of minimally invasive surgery for tumor resection. Trainees are also given the opportunity to engage in direct mentoring in the laboratory by advanced laparoscopic surgeons in each of the surgical specialties.
The course teaches the basic science of thermal energy, too. In the laboratory/task session, participants rotate through several training stations, including:
- Robotic simulator lab
- Robotic cadaver lab
- Animal lab
- Ultrasound lab
- Laparoscopic simulator lab
Fellows are required to participate at stations specified by the department. Supporting vendors are also available to lecture and demonstrate how to use surgical instrumentation.
High-risk patients who undergo selected surgeries are contacted by our clinical staff to participate in our teledischarge project. Following routine post-surgical discharge, the health care team initiates a scheduled teleconference with each enrolled patient at two time points. Each patient also has the ability to schedule an ad hoc video conference at any time they would otherwise phone the health care team for assistance. Data collected from this project will be used to inform subsequent studies on the utility of Perioperative Telemedicine® technologies in the postoperative period, with the goals of:
- Improving patient satisfaction
- Improving critical information transfer and process improvement
- Reducing the rate and severity of short-term post-hospitalization complications
- Reducing costs of postoperative care
This study assesses the level of patient satisfaction with the use of "tele-presence" technology for evaluation and management of postoperative urology inpatients. Patients will receive a combination of bedside rounding and telerounding. For the purpose of this study, telerounding is defined as any inpatient assessment done via a real-time, audiovisual connection using an iPad tablet.
Eligible participants are patients 18 years and older who have undergone minimally invasive and robotic kidney, bladder and/or prostate procedures, and are able to read and understand English.
Upon discharge, participants will be given a questionnaire developed by the Patient-reported Outcomes, Survey & Population Research Shared Resource