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J Surg Educ. 2017 Aug 28. pii: S1931-7204(17)30168-X. doi: 10.1016/j.jsurg.2017.07.023. [Epub ahead of print]

Evaluating the Use of Cleft Lip and Palate 3D-Printed Models as a Teaching Aid.

Author information

1
UCL Division of Surgery & Interventional Science, Centre for Nanotechnology & Regenerative Medicine, University College London, London, United Kingdom; Charles Wolfson Center for Reconstructive Surgery, Royal Free Hospital, London, United Kingdom. Electronic address: 12michellegriffin@gmail.com.
2
UCL Division of Surgery & Interventional Science, Centre for Nanotechnology & Regenerative Medicine, University College London, London, United Kingdom; Charles Wolfson Center for Reconstructive Surgery, Royal Free Hospital, London, United Kingdom.
3
UCL Division of Surgery & Interventional Science, Centre for Nanotechnology & Regenerative Medicine, University College London, London, United Kingdom; Charles Wolfson Center for Reconstructive Surgery, Royal Free Hospital, London, United Kingdom; Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust Hospital, London, United Kingdom.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Visualization tools are essential for effective medical education, to aid students understanding of complex anatomical systems. Three dimensional (3D) printed models are showing a wide-reaching potential in the field of medical education, to aid the interpretation of 2D imaging. This study investigates the use of 3D-printed models in educational seminars on cleft lip and palate, by comparing integrated "hands-on" student seminars, with 2D presentation seminar methods.

SETTING:

Cleft lip and palate models were manufactured using 3D-printing technology at the medical school.

PARTICIPANTS:

Sixty-seven students from two medical schools participated in the study.

DESIGN:

The students were randomly allocated to 2 groups. Knowledge was compared between the groups using a multiple-choice question test before and after the teaching intervention. Group 1 was the control group with a PowerPoint presentation-based educational seminar and group 2 was the test group, with the same PowerPoint presentation, but with the addition of a physical demonstration using 3D-printed models of unilateral and bilateral cleft lips and palate.

RESULTS:

The level of knowledge gained was established using a preseminar and postseminar assessment, in 2 different institutions, where the addition of the 3D-printed model resulted in a significant improvement in the mean percentage of knowledge gained (44.65% test group; 32.16%; control group; p = 0.038). Student experience was assessed using a postseminar survey, where students felt the 3D-printed model significantly improved the learning experience (p = 0.005) and their visualization (p = 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:

This study highlights the benefits of the use of 3D-printed models as visualization tools in medical education and the potential of 3D-printing technology to become a standard and effective tool in the interpretation of 2D imaging.

KEYWORDS:

3D printing; Interpersonal Skills and Communication; Medical Knowledge; Patient Care; Practice Based Learning and Improvement; additive manufacturing; cleft lip and palate; education; teaching aid; visualization

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