Surgical simulation: a current review
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- Dunkin, B., Adrales, G.L., Apelgren, K. et al. Surg Endosc (2007) 21: 357. doi:10.1007/s00464-006-9072-0
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Simulation tools offer the opportunity for the acquisition of surgical skill in the preclinical setting. Potential educational, safety, cost, and outcome benefits have brought increasing attention to this area in recent years. Utility in ongoing assessment and documentation of surgical skill, and in documenting proficiency and competency by standardized metrics, is another potential application of this technology. Significant work is yet to be done in validating simulation tools in the teaching of endoscopic, laparoscopic, and other surgical skills. Early data suggest face and construct validity, and the potential for clinical benefit, from simulation-based preclinical skills development. The purpose of this review is to highlight the status of simulation in surgical education, including available simulator options, and to briefly discuss the future impact of these modalities on surgical training.