Main Content

Surgery Simulation Center

The Surgery Simulation Center was established in 2003. It is located in the original Medical School building, and a combination lock provides surgical residents with 24-hour access year-round. State-of-the-art laparoscopic and endoscopic simulators are available.

Residents progress at their own pace through the minimally invasive surgery curriculum, with operative opportunities linked to their simulator skills progression. Simulator practice is supplemented by in vivo laboratory sessions for each post-graduate year group. A large textbook, CD-rom and video/DVD library of all laparoscopic techniques and procedures is also available in the Surgery Simulation Center, and these resources are constantly updated and expanded.

  • Laparoscopy and endoscopy simulators
    • Three laparoscopic towers
      Three Stryker laparoscopic towers, or "pelvic trainers," complete with flat-screen monitors, cameras and light sources along with a full set of laparoscopic instruments, allow the resident to practice a number of drills designed to perfect eye-hand coordination, non-dominant hand dexterity and intracorporeal suturing proficiency.
    • Virtual laparoscopy simulator
      This digital laparoscopic simulation system provides an effective learning experience by allowing the residents to practice the basic skills of laparoscopic surgery in a realistic virtual working environment. Practice sessions vary in graphic complexity and level of difficulty, from basic camera and instrument navigation to intra-corporeal suturing. Courses tailored to the resident's post-graduate year are part of the requirements of the minimally invasive training curriculum.
    • Endoscopy simulator
      This system includes three types of endoscopic procedures: bronchoscopy, upper and lower gastrointestinal endoscopy. It is a realistic, computer-based system for teaching and assessing motor skills and cognitive knowledge, enabling residents to practice in a safe environment. The case-based modules provide increasingly challenging patients to test progress. The endoscopes look, feel and handle exactly like the real ones and the simulator provides realistic force feedback, allowing the user to experience the feel of the real procedure. The digital patients respond in a physiologically accurate manner adding to the level of realism.
  • Animal laboratory
    Five (PGY 1-5) in vivo laboratory sessions occur as part of the Minimally Invasive Surgery curriculum during the academic year. Each session is 4 hours long, and the residents scheduled for these labs are excused from clinical duties for the duration of the session.

    Using a porcine model, and under general surgery faculty supervision, the residents directly participate in performance of a variety of advanced laparoscopic procedures such as Laparoscopic Nissen Fundoplication, Laparoscopic Colectomy, and Laparoscopic Bariatric Surgery. This is preceded by a didactic session that features lectures focusing purely on the technical aspect of the different procedures being practiced.