Surgery Open Science (Oct 2019)

Smartphone application supplements laparoscopic training through simulation by reducing the need for feedback from expert tutors

  • Jose Quezada,
  • Pablo Achurra,
  • Domenech Asbun,
  • Karol Polom,
  • Franco Roviello,
  • Erwin Buckel,
  • Martin Inzunza,
  • Gabriel Escalona,
  • Nicolas Jarufe,
  • Julian Varas

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 1, no. 2
pp. 100 – 104


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Background: Simulation training is a validated, highly effective tool for learning laparoscopy. Feedback plays a crucial role in motor skills training. We present an app to guide students during advanced laparoscopy simulation training and evaluate its effect on training. Methods: A smartphone(iOS)-app was developed. A group of trainees were randomized to use the app (YAPP) or not use the app (NAPP). We used blinded analysis with validated rating scales to assess their performance before and after the training. The number of requests for tutor feedback per session was recorded. Finally, the participants in the YAPP group completed a survey about their experience with the app. Results: Fifteen YAPP and 10 NAPP completed the training program. There were no statistically significant differences between their skills performance scores (P = .338). The number of tutor feedback requests in the YAPP and NAPP was of 4 (3–6) and 13 (10–14) (P < .001), respectively. All participants in the YAPP group found the app was useful. Conclusion: The use of a smartphone app reduces the need for expert tutor feedback without decreasing the degree of skills acquisition.