A Smartphone/Tablet Application for Advanced Laparoscopy Training

Julian Varas, MD, Erwin Buckel, MD, Ricardo Ramirez, Jorge Martinez, MD, Nicolas Jarufe, MD, Camilo Boza, MD

Faculty of Medicine,. Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Department of Digestive Surgery.

Introduction: Nowadays the majority of surgeons and surgical residentes owns either a smartphone or a tablet device. Medical applications have gained popularity as a portable and easy to use access to medical guides and health related information; ideal for physicians with heavy work schedules. This is an unexploited area in surgical laparoscopy training and currently there are no comprehensive learning tools for advanced laparoscopy for these platforms. The aim of this study is to propose an educational application for IOS/Android to teach advanced laparoscopic techniques for surgeons and residents.

Methods and procedures: An evidence-based, validated advanced laparoscopic training curriculum was used as the framework for an interactive teaching tool. An application was programmed for the iOS and Android platforms with a multi-touch layout that allows the user to go through each section with ease. Each section included auto-explicative videos showing advanced laparoscopic techniques and step by step training sessions with an explanation on how to perform each task. Users have the alternative of using the application for a brief instruction on a specific lapartoscopic or a self-guided multi-session training program. A quality survey to assess surgeons and residents’ opinion was delivered.

Results: An application was obtained. 3 main sections were created: 1.-an “Introduction” section in order to explain basic use of the application and the theoretical background behind this training methodology. 2.- A “Technique” section with explanatory videos showing how to perform basic and advanced skills such as needle handling, interrupted suturing, performing enterotomies and closing an anterior and posterior wall of a manual anastomosis with a running suture. 3.- A “Sessions” section including a specific instructional video for each stage of a 16 session training program, including a pre and post evaluation example. The customer survey was met with highly favorable remarks in all areas with the exception of applicability outside a simulation setting.

Conclusions: This application shows a convenient way to deliver cognitive knowledge and a framework for learning advanced laparoscopic skills, using a previously validated method of training at its core. This could allow surgeons and residents to learn surgical skills and may be applied in simulation training centers as a debriefing tool or even a framework with which to train their students.

Session: Poster Presentation

Program Number: P179

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