Validation and learning in the Procedicus KSA virtual reality surgical simulator
Background: Advanced simulator training within medicine is a rapidly growing field. Virtual reality simulators are being introduced as cost-saving educational tools, which also lead to increased patient safety. Methods: Fifteen medical students were included in the study. For 10 medical students performance was monitored, before and after 1 h of training, in two endoscopic simulators (the Procedicus KSA with haptic feedback and anatomical graphics and the established MIST simulator without this haptic feedback and graphics). Five medical students performed 50 tests in the Procedicus KSA in order to analyze learning curves. One of these five medical students performed multiple training sessions during 2 weeks and performed more than 300 tests. Results: There was a significant improvement after 1 h of training regarding time, movement economy, and total score. The results in the two simulators were highly correlated. Conclusion: Our results show that the use of surgical simulators as a pedagogical tool in medical student training is encouraging. It shows rapid learning curves and our suggestion is to introduce endoscopic simulator training in undergraduate medical education during the course in surgery when motivation is high and before the development of "negative stereotypes" and incorrect practices.
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