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Semin Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2019 Jun 17. pii: S1043-0679(19)30180-7. doi: 10.1053/j.semtcvs.2019.06.003. [Epub ahead of print]

Hands-On Surgical Simulation in Congenital Heart Surgery: Literature Review and Future Perspective.

Author information

1
Division of Cardiology, Department of Paediatrics, Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Division of Cardiovascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
2
Division of Cardiology, Department of Paediatrics, Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Department of Diagnostic Imaging, Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Electronic address: shi-joon.yoo@sickkids.ca.

Abstract

Congenital heart surgery is a technically demanding specialty resulting in a prolonged training period. With the growing expectation of perfect patient outcomes, there is a need for improved training methods by implementing simulation. We assess the utilization of simulation in the training of congenital heart surgeons and discuss its future implications. A keyword-based PubMed literature search was conducted for hands-on surgical simulation in congenital heart surgery. The abstracts/titles of the search were reviewed and papers using simulation specific to congenital cardiac surgery were selected. Studies that did not include surgeons operating on the simulator, or did not incorporate assessment methods were excluded. Analysis included the problem addressed, simulator-type, methodology, assessment methods, results, benefits/limitations, and reproducibility. Five papers fulfilled our selection criteria of hands-on surgical simulation in congenital heart surgery with an assessment of the simulator or procedural performance. One simulation used animal models and 4 utilized 3D-printed models. Simulators covered either single or multiple complex procedures. All studies highlight usefulness of simulation; however, only 1 study has been replicated with >10 participants. The studies demonstrate how hands-on surgical simulation is possible within congenital heart surgery. Although primarily proof of concept studies, the next step would involve using a greater number of participants and demonstrate how repetition and deliberate practice will improve outcomes. Congenital heart surgery is one of the most technically demanding surgical specialties; therefore, we should lead the way in utilizing simulation to complement the training of our surgeons as we face the challenges ahead.

KEYWORDS:

Congenital heart surgery; Tetralogy of Fallot

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