Benchtop simulation of the retrosigmoid approach: Validation of a surgical simulator and development of a task-specific outcome measure score.

Publication date: Oct 01, 2023

Neurosurgical training is changing globally. Reduced working hours and training opportunities, increased patient safety expectations, and the impact of COVID-19 have reduced operative exposure. Benchtop simulators enable trainees to develop surgical skills in a controlled environment. We aim to validate a high-fidelity simulator model (RetrosigmoidBox, UpSurgeOn) for the retrosigmoid approach to the cerebellopontine angle (CPA). Novice and expert Neurosurgeons and Ear, Nose, and Throat surgeons performed a surgical task using the model – identification of the trigeminal nerve. Experts completed a post-task questionnaire examining face and content validity. Construct validity was assessed through scoring of operative videos employing Objective Structured Assessment of Technical Skills (OSATS) and a novel Task-Specific Outcome Measure score. Fifteen novice and five expert participants were recruited. Forty percent of experts agreed or strongly agreed that the brain tissue looked real. Experts unanimously agreed that the RetrosigmoidBox was appropriate for teaching. Statistically significant differences were noted in task performance between novices and experts, demonstrating construct validity. Median total OSATS score was 14/25 (IQR 10-19) for novices and 22/25 (IQR 20-22) for experts (p

Concepts Keywords
Hours Education
Retrosigmoidbox Microvascular decompression
Surgeons Model validation
Teaching Neurosurgery
Retrosigmoid craniotomy
Simulation training


Type Source Name
disease MESH COVID-19
disease VO Cpa
disease VO nose

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