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Virtual reality as a metric for the assessment of laparoscopic psychomotor skills

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Background: The objective assessment of the psychomotor skills of surgeons is now a priority; however, this is a difficult task because of measurement difficulties associated with the assessment of surgery in vivo. In this study, virtual reality (VR) was used to overcome these problems. Methods: Twelve experienced (>50 minimal-access procedures), 12 inexperienced laparoscopic surgeons (<10 minimal-access procedures), and 12 laparoscopic novices participated in the study. Each subject completed 10 trials on the Minimally Invasive Surgical Trainer; Virtual Reality (MIST VR). Results: Experienced laparoscopic surgeons performed the tasks significantly (p < 0.01) faster, with less error, more economy in the movement of instruments and the use of diathermy, and with greater consistency in performance. The standardized coefficient alpha for performance measures ranged from a = 0.89 to 0.98, showing high internal measurement consistency. Test–retest reliability ranged from r = 0.96 to r = 0.5. Conclusion: VR is a useful tool for evaluating the psychomotor skills needed to perform laparoscopic surgery.

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Gallagher, A., Satava, R. Virtual reality as a metric for the assessment of laparoscopic psychomotor skills . Surg Endosc 16, 1746–1752 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00464-001-8215-6

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  • Laparoscopic Surgery
  • Virtual Reality
  • Coefficient Alpha
  • Mist
  • Objective Assessment