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SJHH / Health Services/ Surgical Services/ Boris Family Centre for Robotic Surgery/ Research Projects in Robotic Surgery

Research Projects in Robotic Surgery


St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton is an academic research community focused on improving the quality of life for our patients and community members, as well as those diagnosed with a diverse range of medical conditions around the world.

Our community is a place where:

  • every patient is engaged
  • every clinician, allied health professional and employee is an explorer
  • the disciplines of science advance in willing partnership
  • improving quality of life is the primary metric

We function as a scientific community for the good of our community and the world we share.  Our community includes world-class researchers working alongside local clinicians and students – fostering a culture of exploration, innovation and inquiry.

Research Projects in the Boris Family Centre for Robotic Surgery

Thoracic Surgery Research

  • St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton is leading a systemic review of literature on robotics assisted surgery in thoracics, as currently there is very little academic research completed in the field of robotic thoracic surgery.
  • Working closing with the University Health Network and Toronto General Hospital, we will launch the first ever randomized clinical trial to compare robotic surgery to traditional minimally invasive surgery in the treatment of lung cancer.
  • Leading a multidisciplinary collaboration between Thoracic Surgery, Pathology and Interventional Radiology to create new surgical technology using Near Infra-Red Imaging in Robotic Surgery for Lung Cancer
  • Leading a national effort to understand the learning curves and cost implications of robotic surgery program on publicly funded healthcare


Head & Neck Surgery Research

  • St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton is working with Western University on a randomized clinical trial aimed at helping to determine best practices for the treatment of oropharyngeal cancer.  The study is aiming to recruit 120 patients, 60 of whom will receive transoral robotic surgery, and 60 of whom will receive radiation treatment.  The data from the study will be used to examine quality of life, side effects and survival rates. 


Urology Surgery Research

  • Rocco Stitch Study
    The Rocco Stitch is a surgical technique that may have the potential to yield improved patient outcomes for patients undergoing a robotic assisted prostatectomy, including urinary continence and erectile function.  Currently 78 patients are enrolled in the study and the Urology Research team is hoping to recruit a total of 150 patients for a randomized controlled trial. 
  • Robotic Assisted Laparoscopic Radical Prostatectomy Delphi/Validation Study
    This research study is aimed at developing a tool to assess the competency of surgical trainees.  The Delphi portion of the study which collected expert consensus on the steps required to perform a Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy is largely complete and is currently being transcribed by the research team.  The next step is the Validation portion of the study which looks at rating how well each of the steps of the surgery are performed via video evidence.  This study won first prize at the Canadian Urological Association annual meeting in 2014 during Urology Resident Research Day.
  • Robotic Surgical Skill Acquisition
    Currently there is no curriculum in medical schools to teach residents the techniques required to perform robotic-assisted surgery.  Recognizing this as an opportunity to further our teaching and research mandate, St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton has partnered with McMaster University to examine how skills learned in a robotic surgery simulation laboratory are transferred into use in the operating room.  This study will be used to guide the introduction of robotic surgery simulation into the training of future surgeons in McMaster University’s department of surgery.


Learn more about Research at St. Joe’s!