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Ann Thorac Surg. 2004 Jul;78(1):287-91; discussion 287-91.

Bronchoscopy simulator effectively prepares junior residents to competently perform basic clinical bronchoscopy.

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Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, Illinois, USA.



Teaching procedural skills in a clinical setting is becoming increasingly difficult. Simulators can provide safe and inexpensive skills training. This randomized study was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of a bronchoscopy simulator in teaching clinical bronchoscopy.


Three groups of surgical residents were evaluated while performing an intraoperative flexible bronchoscopy. First year (PGY1) residents were randomly assigned to perform bronchoscopy either with (n = 5) or without (n = 5) preprocedural bronchoscopic simulator training (PreOp flexible bronchoscopic simulator, Immersion Medical, Gaithersburg, MD). Residents PGY2 to 3 (n = 3) with prior bronchoscopic experience (> or = 10 bronchoscopies) underwent evaluation without simulator training. Subjects were required to complete a systematic airway examination through a laryngeal mask airway with patients under general anesthesia. Evaluation criteria included procedure time, number of verbal and physical interventions by evaluator, and a rating of exam thoroughness, proficiency, and confidence.


The PGY1 subjects who trained on the simulator required significantly fewer verbal (6.2 +/- 1.6 vs 3.2 +/- 0.8) and physical (1.6 +/- 0.2 vs 0.2 +/- 0.4) cues and performed more systematic examinations (2.6 +/- 0.5 vs 4.4 +/- 0.9 on scale 1 to 5) than those who did not use the trainer. The skill level of PGY1 subjects who worked with the simulator was similar to that of PGY2 to 3 residents experienced in bronchoscopy. Procedural times were not different between groups as the evaluator maintained the pace of the examination using verbal and physical assistance.


One hour of training with the bronchoscopic simulator effectively taught residents basic bronchoscopy and familiarity with airway anatomy. Residents using the trainer performed first-time bronchoscopy nearly as competently as residents experienced with bronchoscopy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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