Jensen, Katrine3; Ringsted, Charlotte4; Hansen, Henrik Jessen3; Petersen, René Horsleben3; Konge, Lars5
1 Section of Surgery and Internal Medicine, Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet2 Department of Clinical Medicine, Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet3 unknown4 Section of Surgery and Internal Medicine, Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet5 Department of Clinical Medicine, Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet
a randomized controlled trial: virtual-reality versus black-box simulation
BACKGROUND: Video-assisted thoracic surgery is gradually replacing conventional open thoracotomy as the method of choice for the treatment of early-stage non-small cell lung cancers, and thoracic surgical trainees must learn and master this technique. Simulation-based training could help trainees overcome the first part of the learning curve, but no virtual-reality simulators for thoracoscopy are commercially available. This study aimed to investigate whether training on a laparoscopic simulator enables trainees to perform a thoracoscopic lobectomy. METHODS: Twenty-eight surgical residents were randomized to either virtual-reality training on a nephrectomy module or traditional black-box simulator training. After a retention period they performed a thoracoscopic lobectomy on a porcine model and their performance was scored using a previously validated assessment tool. RESULTS: The groups did not differ in age or gender. All participants were able to complete the lobectomy. The performance of the black-box group was significantly faster during the test scenario than the virtual-reality group: 26.6 min (SD 6.7 min) versus 32.7 min (SD 7.5 min). No difference existed between the two groups when comparing bleeding and anatomical and non-anatomical errors. CONCLUSION: Simulation-based training and targeted instructions enabled the trainees to perform a simulated thoracoscopic lobectomy. Traditional black-box training was more effective than virtual-reality laparoscopy training. Thus, a dedicated simulator for thoracoscopy should be available before establishing systematic virtual-reality training programs for trainees in thoracic surgery.
Surgical Endoscopy, 2014, Vol 28, Issue 6, p. 1821-1829