Visual gaze patterns reveal surgeons’ ability to identify risk of bile duct injury during laparoscopic cholecystectomy

Chetanya Sharma, Harsimrat Singh, Felipe Orihuela-Espina, Ara W. Darzi, Mikael H. Sodergren

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Background: Bile duct injury is a serious surgical complication of laparoscopic cholecystectomy. The aim of this study was to identify distinct visual gaze patterns associated with the prompt detection of bile duct injury risk during laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

Methods: Twenty-nine participants viewed a laparoscopic cholecystectomy that led to a serious bile duct injury (‘BDI video’) and an uneventful procedure (‘control video’) and reported when an error was perceived that could result in bile duct injury. Outcome parameters include fixation sequences on anatomical structures and eye tracking metrics. Surgeons were stratified into two groups based on performance and compared.

Results: The ‘early detector’ group displayed reduced common bile duct dwell time in the first half of the BDI video, as well as increased cystic duct dwell time and Calot's triangle glances count during Calot's triangle dissection in the control video. Machine learning based classification of fixation sequences demonstrated clear separability between early and late detector groups.

Conclusion: There are discernible differences in gaze patterns associated with early recognition of impending bile duct injury. The results could be transitioned into real time and used as an intraoperative early warning system and in an educational setting to improve surgical safety and performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)715-722
Number of pages8
JournalHPB : the official journal of the International Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association
Issue number5
Early online date26 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - May 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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