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J Surg Educ. 2012 Nov-Dec;69(6):693-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jsurg.2012.06.013. Epub 2012 Aug 2.

A novel cadaver-based educational program in general surgery training.

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  • 1David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1722, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To describe the development of a cadaver-based educational program and report our residents' assessment of the new program.

DESIGN:

An anatomy-based educational program was developed using fresh frozen cadavers to teach surgical anatomy and operative skills to general surgery (GS) trainees. Residents were asked to complete a voluntary, anonymous survey evaluating perceptions of the program (6 questions formulated on a 5-point Likert scale) and comparing cadaver sessions to other types of learning (4 rank order questions).

SETTING:

Large university teaching hospital.

PARTICIPANTS:

Medical students, residents, and faculty members were participants in the cadaver programs. Only GS residents were asked to complete the survey.

RESULTS:

Since its implementation, 150 residents of all levels participated in 13 sessions. A total of 40 surveys were returned for a response rate of 89%. Overall, respondents held a positive view of the cadaver sessions and believed them to be useful for learning anatomy (94% agree or strongly agree), learning the steps of an operation (76% agree or strongly agree), and increasing confidence in doing an operation (53% agree or strongly agree). Trainees wanted to have more sessions (87% agree or strongly agree), and believed they would spend free time in the cadaver laboratory (58% agree or strongly agree). Compared with other learning modalities, cadaver sessions were ranked first for learning surgical anatomy, followed by textbooks, simulators, web sites, animate laboratories, and lectures. Respondents also ranked cadaver sessions first for increasing confidence in performing a procedure and for learning the steps of an operation. Cost of cadavers represented the major expense of the program.

CONCLUSIONS:

Fresh cadaver dissections represent a solution to the challenges of efficient, safe, and effective general surgery education. Residents have a positive attitude toward these teaching sessions and found them to be more effective than other learning modalities.

Copyright © 2012 Association of Program Directors in Surgery. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID:
23111032
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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