Send to

Choose Destination
Surg Endosc. 2001 Oct;15(10):1080-4.

Virtual reality training leads to faster adaptation to the novel psychomotor restrictions encountered by laparoscopic surgeons.

Author information

School of Psychology, The Queens' University of Belfast, David Keir Building, Malone Road, Belfast, BT7 1NN, Northern Ireland.



The fulcrum effect of the body wall on instrument handling poses a major obstacle to the mastery of instrument coordination for junior laparoscopic surgeons. This study evaluated three types of laparoscopic simulator training to assess their ability to promote the user's adaptation to the fulcrum effect.


Thirty-two participants with no previous experience in laparoscopic surgery were randomly assigned to one of four groups representing different training conditions. One group was assigned to use a virtual reality simulator (MIST VR); two others were given a laparoscopic Z or U maze-tracking task. The control group received no training. Subjects were asked to perform a 2-min laparoscopic cutting task under normal laparoscopic imaging conditions first before and then after training.


In the test trial, subjects who trained on MIST VR made significantly more correct incisions (p < 0.0001) and fewer incorrect incisions (p < 0.0001).


Training on a virtual reality simulator such as MIST VR helps laparoscopic novices adapt to the fulcrum effect faster.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center