Short-Duration Virtual-Reality Simulation Training Positively Impacts Performance During Laparoscopic Colectomy in an IMAL Model: Results of a Randomized Trial.

Sergio E Araujo, MD, PhD, Conor P Delaney, Md, MCh, PhD, Victor E Seid, MD, Antonio R Imperiale, MD, Paulo Herman, MD, PhD, Sergio C Nahas, MD, PhD, Ivan Cecconello, MdPhD

Colorectal Surgery Division at University of Sao Paulo Medical Center, Sao Paulo, Brazil and Case Western Reserve University Center for Skills and Simulation, Cleveland, OH

Purpose: Several studies have demonstrated transfering of skills after virtual reality (VR) simulation training in laparoscopic surgery. However, most studies have demonstrated improved simulation performance only after simulation training. Moreover, the impact of VR simulation training on transfer of skills specific to laparoscopic colectomy remains unknown. The present study aimed at determining the impact of VR simulation warm-up on surgical trainees performance during laparoscopic colectomy in the porcine model.

Methods: Fourteen residents naive to laparoscopic colectomy were randomly assigned to two groups. Seven trainees completed a 2-hour VR simulator training in the laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy module (study group). The remaining seven surgeons (control group) underwent no intervention. On the same day, all participants performed a laparoscopic anterior resection with anastomosis on a pig. All operations were recorded on DVD. Performance evaluation was independently assessed by two board-certified colorectal surgeons blinded to trainee’s identity. The two examiners used a previously validated clinical instrument specific to laparoscopic colectomy. General and specific technical skills were analyzed.

Results: Surgeons undergoing short-duration training on the VR simulator performed significantly better during laparoscopic colectomy on the pig based on general and specific technical skills evaluation. The average score of generic skills was 17.2 (16.5 – 18) for the control group and 20.1 (16.5 – 22) for the study group (p=0.002). Regarding specific skills, the average score for the control group was 20.2 (19 – 21.5), and 24.2 (21 – 27.5) for the study group (p = 0.001).

Conclusions: A single short-duration VR simulator practice positively impacted surgeons’ generic and specific skills performance required to accomplish laparoscopic colectomy in the porcine model.

Session: Poster Presentation

Program Number: P146

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