Introduction and validation of the american urological association basic laparoscopic urologic surgery skills curriculum

Rob Sweet, Rebekah Beach, Francois Sainfort, Priyanka Gupta, Troy Reihsen, Lauren H. Poniatowski, Elspeth M. McDougall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: The Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS ) skills curriculum has validity evidence supporting use for assessing laparoscopic skills for general surgeons. As charged by the American Urological Association (AUA) Laparoscopy, Robotic, and New Surgical Technology Committee, we sought to develop and validate a urology-specific FLS, referred to as the Basic Laparoscopic Urologic Surgery (BLUS) skills curriculum. The psychomotor component consists of three existing FLS tasks and one new clip-applying task. Materials and Methods: An animate renal artery model was designed for a clip-applying skills task. We assessed the acceptability and construct validity of using BLUS for basic laparoscopic skills assessment for urologists. A cohort of practicing urologists, fellows, residents, and medical students completed the tasks at the AUA Annual Meetings in 2010 and 2011. Results: All exercises were acceptable and demonstrated excellent face and content validity (>4.5/5 on a five-point Likert scale). Practicing clinical urologists (N=81) outperformed residents and medical students (N=35) in time to completion of circle cut (P<0.01) and in keeping scissor tips toward the center of the circle (P<0.01). Practicing urologists who reported >3 laparoscopic procedures per week were faster at the peg-transfer exercise (P<0.05) and the cutting exercise (P<0.01) than those reporting one to two procedures. More errors were committed for clip-applying among practicing urologists who perform one to two laparoscopic procedures (1.24) vs. those who perform >3 procedures (0.57) per week (P<0.01). Conclusions: All exercises including the novel clip-applying model demonstrated good acceptability and evidence of construct validity (face, content, concurrent and convergent validity) for assessment of basic laparoscopic skill for urologic surgeons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)190-196
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of endourology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012

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