Six units valued at Rs. 25 lakh each installed at AIIMS

The All-India Institute of Medical Sciences here has become the first hospital in Asia to bring home the "Tuebingen Unit" that is used for training surgeons in minimally invasive surgery.

Gifted to the Institute, six units valued at Rs. 25 lakh each, have been pressed into service and the first batch of 10 doctors selected from across the country have started training on them.

And giving these surgeons their first lesson on how to use the technology is world-renowned surgeon Prof. G.F. Buess from the University of Klinik of Tuebingen, Germany, who was in Delhi to attend the first AIIMS Surgical Week "International Conference -- CME-cum-Live Workshop".

Speaking about what the new technology brings along, Prof. Buess said: "The concept is simple. Surgeons all over the world learn surgery while on the job which means that patients are used to learn on. Our method helps to practice minimally invasive surgery using animal organs. The idea is that doctors should not learn on patients but learn first before operating on the patient. After the training what the surgeon gains is experience without any trials on patients. Also animal organs are collected from dead animals, so there is no cruelty involved. In short the surgery reduces the risk involved in surgery to patients."

Permanent feature

The unit is now a permanent feature at the Institute and will be used for training doctors from across the country.

"The Institute has started training its first batch with students from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Jammu and Kashmir and Kolkata," said Prof. M.C. Misra of the Department of Surgical Disciplines.

He added: "The training unit is specially important when we are introducing new procedures and better technology in the field of surgery and comes in very useful to help the surgeon become prepared, and reduces the time required to carry out a procedure and thereby also the risk for the patient. Also, the learning period is greatly reduced helping surgeons to be more confident while carrying out a procedure. The units will be used to train doctors from across the country and our effort will be to reach as many doctors as we possibly can."

The Tuebingen Unit is built to give the surgeon the same texture and feel of the human body.

Also, animal organs similar to humans are used for surgery to give the surgeon a more real experience, added Dr. V.K. Bansal of the Department of Surgery at AIIMS. -Staff Reporter