Validating the Use of the Mimic dV-trainer for Robotic Surgery Skill Acquisition Among Urology Residents

Department of Urology, Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY 10032, USA.
Urology (Impact Factor: 2.19). 12/2011; 78(6):1326-30. DOI: 10.1016/j.urology.2011.07.1426
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To compare robotic surgery skill acquisition of residents trained with Mimic dVTrainer (MdVT) and da Vinci Surgical System (dVSS) console. No standardized curriculum currently exists for robotic surgical education. The MdVT is a compact hardware platform that closely reproduces the experience of the dVSS.
Sixteen urology trainees were randomized into 3 groups. A baseline evaluation using dVSS was performed and consisted of 2 exercises requiring endowrist manipulation (EM), camera movement and clutching (CC), needle control (NC), and knot-tying (KT). Groups 1 and 2 completed a standardized training curriculum on MdVT and dVSS, respectively. Group 3 received no additional training. After completion of the training phase, all trainees completed a secondary evaluation on dVSS consisting of the same exercises performed during baseline evaluation.
There was no difference in baseline performance scores across the 3 groups. Although Group 3 showed no significant improvement in EM/CC domain (P = .15), Groups 1 and 2 had statistically significant improvement in EM/CC domain (P = .039 and P = .007, respectively). The difference in improvement between Groups 1 and group 2 was not statistically different (P = .21). Only Group 2 trainees showed significant improvement in the NC and KT domains during secondary evaluation (P = .02).
Curriculum-based training with MdVT or dVSS significantly improves robotic surgery aptitude. Similar improvements are seen for exercise domains shared between MdVT and dVSS groups. Follow-up studies are necessary to assess the efficacy of MdVT over a wider spectrum of domains.

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    • "Moreover, training on the dVT can actually improve performance on the robot system equal to training with the robot itself. Improvement of technical surgical performance can be achieved within a relatively short period of time [20, 21]. Another important question is if this VR system could also be used for assessment of robotic skills [22]. "
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    The Scientific World Journal 01/2014; 2014(2):507076. DOI:10.1155/2014/507076 · 1.73 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Robotic Surgery 12/2013; DOI:10.1007/s11701-013-0403-6
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: Virtual reality simulators with self-assessment software may assist novice robotic surgeons to augment direct proctoring in robotic surgical skill acquisition. We compare and correlate the da Vinci Trainer™ (dVT) and da Vinci Surgical Skills Simulators (dVSSS) in subjects with varying robotic experience. Materials and methods: Students, urology residents, fellows, and practicing urologists with varying robotic experience were enrolled after local institutional review board approval. Three virtual reality tasks were preformed in sequential order (pegboard 1, pegboard 2, and tubes)-initially on the dVSSS and then on the dVT. The Mimic™ software used on both systems provides raw values and percent scores that were used in statistical evaluation. Statistical analysis was performed with the two-tailed independent t-test, analysis of variance, Tukey, and the Pearson rank correlation coefficient where appropriate. Results: Thirty-two participants were recruited for this study and separated into five groups based on robotic surgery experience. In regards to construct validity, both simulators were able to differentiate differences among the five robotic surgery experience groups in the tubes suturing task (p≤0.00). Sixty-seven percent (4/6) robotic experts thought that surgical simulation should be implemented in residency training. The overall cohort considered both platforms easy to learn and use. Conclusions: Although performance scores were less in the dVT compared with the dVSSS, both simulators demonstrate good content and construct validity. The simulators appear to be equivalent for assessing surgeon proficiency and either can be used for robotic skills training with self-assessment feedback.
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