Journal List > Hanyang Med Rev > v.33(3) > 1044151

Park: Role of Experimental Research as a Hepatobiliary Surgeon


In the 1970s, surgeons performed a variety of experimental procedures on animals. Experimental surgery has scientific merit and allows surgeons to carry out many studies to understand pathophysiology in several fields of medicine. However, the strong opposition to animal research and the surgeon's increasing demand of clinical activities has threatened the opportunities of performing experimental studies. Although large animals are not permitted, small animals are available to use. The rat is a frequently used species, since it is economical and easy to breed and anesthetize. As a hepatobiliary surgeon, I studied liver resection and liver transplantation in rats. The technique of transplantation is not easy to obtain since it requires skillful microsurgical techniques. However, these techniques help to undergo experimental research and can be used as practice operations before it is actually performed on humans. As the experimental research continues to be an important part of surgery, every possible method should be considered in order to increase support and opportunities for research. The first step will be training young surgeons to enhance research. The second step is redirecting priorities among surgeons. The scientific productivity should be set as first priority for surgeons. Final strategy is to collaborate with basic scientists such as immunologist, biochemist and so on. There is no doubt that major advancement in the field of medicine in the 21st century will continue to arise from research in surgery. Surgeons should seek for more opportunities in good research training, and provide some time for experimental research.

Figures and Tables

Fig. 1
Outline of the anatomy of the liver of the rat. LLS, left lateral liver; LML, left middle liver; RML, right middle liver; SRL, superior right liver; IRL, inferior right liver; AC, anterior caudate lobe; PC, posterior caudate lobe.
Fig. 2
Heterotopic heart transplantation of the rat. Ono and Lindsey technique: Donor arota anastomosed to recipient aorta, Donor pulmonary artery anastomosed to receipient inferior vena cava. IVC, inferior vena cava; PA, pulmonary artery.
Fig. 3
Orthotopic liver transplantation of the rat. Kamada's cuff technique: cuff for the portal vein and infrahepatic vena cava. IHVC, inferior hepatic vena cava; PV, portal vein; CBD, common bile duct.


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