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THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS

A NOVEL VIRTUAL REALITY SIMULATION FOR HEMOSTASIS IN A BRAIN SURGICAL CAVITY: PERCEIVED UTILITY FOR VISUOMOTOR SKILLS IN CURRENT AND ASPIRING NEUROSURGERY RESIDENTS

This simulation module may be suitable for resident training, as well as for the development of career interest and skill acquisition; however, validation for this type of simulation needs to be further developed.

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Objective:

To understand the perceived utility of a novel simulator to improve operative skill, eye-hand coordination, and depth perception.

Methods:

We used the ImmersiveTouch simulation platform (ImmersiveTouch, Inc., Chicago, Illinois, USA) in two U.S. Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education-accredited neurosurgical training programs: the University of Chicago and the University of Texas Medical Branch. A total of 54 trainees participated in the study, which consisted of 14 residents (group A), 20 senior medical students who were neurosurgery candidates (group B), and 20 junior medical students (group C). The participants performed a simulation task that established bipolar hemostasis in a virtual brain cavity and provided qualitative feedback regarding perceived benefits in eye-hand coordination, depth perception, and potential to assist in improving operating skills.

Results:

The perceived ability of the simulator to positively influence skills judged by the three groups: group A, residents; group B, senior medical students; and group C, junior medical students was, respectively, 86%, 100%, and 100% for eye-hand coordination; 86%, 100%, and 95% for depth perception; and 79%, 100%, and 100% for surgical skills in the operating room. From all groups, 96.2% found the simulation somewhat or very useful to improve eye-hand coordination, and 94% considered it beneficial to improve depth perception and operating room skills.

Conclusions:

This simulation module may be suitable for resident training, as well as for the development of career interest and skill acquisition; however, validation for this type of simulation needs to be further developed.

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