The Role of Virtual Reality in the Training for Carotid Artery Stenting: The Perspective of Trainees
INTRODUCTION: Virtual reality (VR) simulators have been proven to be a reliable tool to achieve experience for stenting of the carotid artery (CAS). We describe our experience in the use of virtual reality for the training of young surgeons for CAS procedures.
METHODS: One hundred novice surgeons without any prior experience with endovascular interventions (group A) and 100 operators with prior experience in CAS (group B) carried on a virtual procedure of carotid stenting on a simulator in an easy and in a difficult case of carotid stenosis. They performed a tutored training on VR simulator for three hours and then performed again the same starting procedures. Data recorded from the starting and ending procedures were inserted in a database and assessed.
RESULTS: All participants of group A ended the first procedure on the easy case within 1 h, while only 38% of the trainees concluded the starting procedure on the difficult case (P = .001). After training, 59% of the trainees concluded the difficult case (P = .02). After training, a significant improvement of some metrics was recorded in the group of trainees when the easy case was performed, but the improvement after training was not significant in the difficult case. CONCLUSIONS: VR simulator has proved to be an effective tool for the training of inexperienced operators in easy cases; conversely, its role is still unclear for more complex cases.
KeywordsVirtual reality Carotid artery stenting Training
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