Orthopaedic education in the era of surgical simulation: Still at the crawling stage

Kivanc Atesok, Peter MacDonald, Jeff Leiter, James Dubberley, Richard Satava, Ann van Heest, Shepard Hurwitz, J. Lawrence Marsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Surgical skills education is in the process of a crucial transformation from a master-apprenticeship model to simulation-based training. Orthopaedic surgery is one of the surgical specialties where simulation-based skills training needs to be integrated into the curriculum efficiently and urgently. The reason for this strong and pressing need is that orthopaedic surgery covers broad human anatomy and pathologies and requires learning enormously diverse surgical procedures including basic and advanced skills. Although the need for a simulationbased curriculum in orthopaedic surgery is clear, several obstacles need to be overcome for a smooth transformation. The main issues to be addressed can be summarized as defining the skills and procedures so that simulation-based training will be most effective; choosing the right time period during the course of orthopaedic training for exposure to simulators; the right amount of such exposure; using objective, valid and reliable metrics to measure the impact of simulation-based training on the development and progress of surgical skills; and standardization of the simulation-based curriculum nationwide and internationally. In the new era of surgical education, successful integration of simulation-based surgical skills training into the orthopaedic curriculum will depend on efficacious solutions to these obstacles in moving forward.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)290-294
Number of pages5
JournalWorld Journal of Orthopedics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 18 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2017. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Education
  • Orthopaedic surgery
  • Skills training
  • Surgical simulation


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