Surgical training resources in Bangladesh are limited compared with other parts of the world. Whilst there are larger training centers in the major cities – like Dhaka – it’s still difficult for medical students to get a first-hand look at live surgery. 

A typical Operating Room (OR) will have a surgical team of three to four people, and it’s difficult to accommodate many more. Not only that, trainees fortunate enough to get inside the OR can barely see how surgery is being performed.

That’s why surgeons at Bangladesh Institute of Health Sciences (BIHS) General Hospital, Dhaka, recently made pioneering use of Rods&Cones Kits – remote communication technology for sterile environments – guided by Professor Shafi Ahmed. 

Digital transformation in healthcare

“Congratulations to Dr. Shahriar Md Sadek for performing the first operation using augmented reality smart glasses to livestream a surgical operation for training in Bangladesh.”

Professor Shafi Ahmed, Global Ambassador, Rods&Cones

Dr. Shahriar Md Sadek worked for the NHS in the UK for over a decade before taking up a consultancy role at Bangladesh Institute of Health Sciences (BIHS) General Hospital, Dhaka. He’s both a general surgeon – performing everything from gallbladder removal to hernia repair – and a specialist in colorectal surgery. 


When Dr. Sadek was a trainee, the only way to view live surgery was to be physically present in the OR. There was limited space and a restricted view of the work taking place at the table. For today’s medical students, that’s all changed. Rods&Cones Kits can provide a surgeon’s-eye view and a view of the entire OR, so students can even observe supporting roles.


Alongside Dr. Sadek in the OR – as he performed the first live streamed surgery for training purposes using a Rod&Cones Kit – was Dr. Hasan Shahriar Kallol. His role was to set up the equipment inside the OR. As a surgical oncologist, Dr Kallol had an active interest in how the technology might be applied to support his own medical students, located outside the city of Dhaka in a smaller medical facility without the resources to conduct every type of surgery. 

Picture Above: Dr. Hasan Shahriar Kallol controlling the remote session from his computer

Accessibility and affordability for all

“As the global ambassador for Rods&Cones, it was a pleasure to bring this platform to the country. I am very proud of Dr. Shahriar Md Sadek and what he is achieving in Bangladesh, and delighted that I could provide some training and mentorship in the UK.”

 Professor Shafi Ahmed, Global Ambassador, Rods&Cones


The first operation in Bangladesh to be livestreamed using a Rods&Cones Kit involved a female with gallstone disease who was otherwise healthy. 


Performing laparoscopic – minimally invasive – surgery for this condition enables the surgeon’s work to be shown on a large screen. Projected in a conference room, junior doctors, trainees, medical professionals, and senior clinicians within the hospital could see the details of the surgery.  


Throughout the entire operation, it was possible for viewers to follow each step as Dr. Sadek described the procedure and explained the techniques he was using  – including when he dissected the cystic artery and needed to control the bleeding. On top of that, the recording can now be used as a training resource for students without direct access to the OR.



Bridging the skills gap – globally 

“Professor Shafi Ahmed first introduced me to Rods&Cones at the Royal London Hospital. But I had never used it before now. I think it’s a fantastic tool for mentors to show trainees how to perform surgery.”

PIcture above: Dr. Md Sadek, Prof. Shafi Ahmed, Dr. Kallol in the BIHS General Hospital in Dhaka, Bangladesh

Dr. Shahriar Md Sadek, Chief Consultant & Department Lead For General And Colorectal Surgery, BIHS General Hospital


In Bangladesh, it’s possible for surgeons to proctor students for one year as part of the medical training curriculum. At the moment, Dr. Sadek has three surgical trainees under his formal supervision.


The Rod&Cones Kit gave him the ability to demonstrate surgical techniques to his trainees, step by step, in extensive detail. Trainees could interact with him through two-way communication, they could ask questions, and he could answer their queries in a structured and convenient way.  



For medical students not residing in a city where there are large hospitals, Rod&Cones secure remote communication platform gives them an unprecedented view of the OR. In fact, with the right equipment and connectivity, the secure livestream can be viewed anywhere in the world. 

The impact and outcomes on patient care

“I am confident to say Rods&Cones Kits will be a very useful technology for future surgical trainees living in Bangladesh. And when the next generation gets into their own mentorship or proctoring, I expect they’ll be using this technology.”

Dr. Shahriar Md Sadek, Chief Consultant & Department Lead For General And Colorectal Surgery, BIHS General Hospital


Dr. Sadek and Dr. Kallol see the potential of Rods&Cones Kits for improving surgical training. Working in a government hospital, Dr. Kallol also thinks that it could be hugely beneficial for students and trainees.


Local medical schools with both undergraduates and postgraduates have in the region of 200 students who could benefit from the Rods&Cones Kit. That’s 200 surgeons who could be better trained when they begin their surgical practice. 


At the same time, students, residents, and qualified surgeons – the entire surgical fraternity – can benefit from observing live surgeries taking place anywhere in the world. And all that access to surgical expertise can only mean one thing – better patient outcomes.


Interested in the potential of Rod&Cones Kits for surgical training? Why not book a free demo? Book now

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