Natural orifice translumenal endoscopic surgery (NOTES) is a sophisticated form of endoscopic surgery whose use has recently spread rapidly around the world. Although hundreds of reports of animal studies and clinical cases about NOTES have been published since 2004, NOTES is still in the experimental phase. The formation of an iatrogenic incision in the lumenal wall of intraperitoneal organs is a major disadvantage of NOTES. No reliable technique for complete closure has yet been established, and this problem must be resolved before NOTES can be adopted as a routine clinical practice. Several devices for the closure of lumenal incisions in the stomach or colorectum have been developed, and their safety and usefulness have been examined in animal studies and clinical cases. Kyushu University has been involved in furthering the adoption of NOTES as a routine clinical practice, and the Kyushu University Training Center for Minimally Invasive Surgery holds training sessions on endoscopic surgical techniques for surgeons from all over Japan. Studies to develop a navigation system and robotic technology for use with NOTES are also in progress at Kyushu University. The further development of endoscopy-related technologies and equipment, such as robotic technology, is therefore essential to allow the safe, widespread adoption of pure NOTES.
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