Prof. Wai Lun Law: current status of robotic rectal surgery in Hong Kong
Meet the Professor

Prof. Wai Lun Law: current status of robotic rectal surgery in Hong Kong

Received: 10 May 2017; Accepted: 18 May 2017; Published: 26 July 2017.

doi: 10.21037/ales.2017.06.03

International meetings are always excellent opportunities for us to meet, communicate and interact with our editorial board members, guest-editors, authors, reviewers, readers, speakers and attendees. During the meeting, we were able to conduct brief interviews with some of the renowned speakers, to share their presentations and perspectives on hot topics in their fields.

We are honored to have an interview with Prof. Wai Lun Law, an excellent colorectal surgeon from The University of Hong Kong, Queen Mary Hospital, Hong Kong (Figure 1).

Figure 1 Picture with Prof. Wai Lun Law.

Prof. Wai Lun Law is a colorectal surgeon with more than 15-year experience conducting quite a number of laparoscopic surgeries. What’s more, he is also good at using surgical robot as well as TaTME for the treatment of selected patients with colorectal cancers.

In his opinion, surgical technique is very important. With the use of surgical robot, we could have a better view and more stable image which laparoscopic surgery couldn’t achieve. In Hong Kong, they started to use it in 2008, and up to now over 3,000 cases have been done. The very reason is that most of the patients didn’t have to pay significant amount of money for robotic surgery, as it’s working under a public system where Hong Kong government would support the expenses. However, laparoscopic surgeries, as a method presented for many years, exist with its own value, and it’s hard to tell which is better overall compared with surgical robot.

At the end of the interview, Prof. Law told us that multidisciplinary approach and individual treatment will be the trend and focus in the future. Besides, he also shared the experience about how he became a colorectal surgeon. More details, please watch the video below (Figure 2).

Figure 2 Interview with Prof. Wai Lun Law (1). Available online:

Interview question

  • Brief self-introduction
  • How do you think the laparoscopic surgery for treating rectal cancer?
  • Concerning you’re also an expert in the Robotic field, would you like to tell us which learning curve is shorter for the surgeons between robot and laparoscopy?
  • Would you like to tell us the current status of application of robotic technique for colorectal cancer in HK? And what’s the difference between its application in HK and mainland?
  • What do you think is the trend for the treatment in colorectal cancer?
  • When did you realize you’re interested in medicine? Why the field of colorectal cancer?
  • How do you keep yourself updated with the latest technique or progress in your field?

Expert introduction

Prof. Law graduated from Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong in 1987. He obtained the fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh in 1991. He was conferred the degree of Master of Surgery in 2001 with the research on the surgical treatment for rectal cancer. Professor Law was appointed as the Clinical Professor of Surgery at The University of Hong Kong in 2008. Currently he is the Anthony and Anne Cheung Professor in Innovative and Minimally Invasive Surgery and the Chief of Division of Colorectal Surgery at Queen Mary Hospital. He is also the Director of the Surgical Skills Centre in the Department of Surgery, The University of Hong Kong. In August 2013, Professor Law was appointed the Associate Dean in Clinical Affairs of the Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong.

Professor Law’s main clinical and research interests are in colorectal surgery and minimally invasive surgery. Professor Law is a member of numerous professional societies. He was on the Education Resources Committee of the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons. He was currently the Secretary-General of the International Society for Digestive Surgery and is currently the President Elect of the International Society of Laparoscopic Colorectal Surgery.

Professor Law has authored over 140 articles in peer-reviewed journals. He is currently on the editorial board of 10 journals. He is also a regular reviewer of over 30 scientific journals including Annals of Surgery, British Journal of Surgery, Diseases of the Colon and Rectum, Surgical Endoscopy and Annals of Surgical Oncology.




Conflicts of Interest: The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.


  1. Gao S, Feng M. Interview with Prof. Wai Lun Law. Asvide 2017;4:296. Available online:

(Science Editor: Skylar Gao, Maxine Feng, ALES,

doi: 10.21037/ales.2017.06.03
Cite this article as: Gao S, Feng M. Prof. Wai Lun Law: current status of robotic rectal surgery in Hong Kong. Ann Laparosc Endosc Surg 2017;2:117.