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Video is better: why aren’t we using it? A mixed-methods study of the barriers to routine procedural video recording and case review

Surgical Endoscopy
Laura Mazer, Oliver Varban, John R. Montgomery, Michael M. Awad, Allison Schulman
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Video-based case review for minimally invasive surgery is immensely valuable for education and quality improvement. Video review can improve technical performance, shorten the learning curve, disseminate new procedures, and improve learner satisfaction. Despite these advantages, it is underutilized in many institutions. So far, research has focused on the benefits of video, and there is relatively little information on barriers to routine utilization.


A 36-question survey was developed on video-based case review and distributed to the SAGES email list. The survey included closed and open-ended questions. Numeric responses and Likert scales were compared with t-test; open-ended responses were reviewed qualitatively through rapid thematic analysis to identify themes and sub-themes.


642 people responded to the survey for a response rate of 11%. 584 (91%) thought video would improve the quality of educational conferences. 435 qualitative responses on the value of video were analyzed, and benefits included (1) improved understanding, (2) increased objectivity, (3) better teaching, and (4) better audience engagement. Qualitative comments regarding specific barriers to recording and editing case video identified challenges at all stages of the process, from (1) the decision to record a case, (2) starting the recording in the OR, (3) transferring and storing files, and (4) editing the file. Each step had its own specific challenges.


Minimally invasive surgeons want to increase their utilization of video-based case review, but there are multiple practical challenges to overcome. Understanding these barriers is essential in order to increase use of video for education and quality improvement.

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