Does Realism Matter? A Randomized Controlled Trial Comparing Models for Medical Student Suture Education

Jared A. Blau, Ronnie L. Shammas, Rachel A. Anolik, Yash J. Avashia, Kate B. Krucoff, Michael R. Zenn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: We hypothesized that medical students trained in suturing using high-fidelity models (cadaveric tissue) would demonstrate greater proficiency when compared with those trained using low-fidelity models (synthetic tissue). Methods: Forty-Three medical students were randomized into 2 groups. Group 1 consisted of students taught to perform simple interrupted sutures using synthetic tissue, and group 2 consisted of those taught using human cadaveric tissue. Suturing proficiency was measured pre-And postinstruction using the Global Rating Scale and by measuring suture accuracy. Perceived confidence in suturing was measured on a scale of 0-100. Results: Perceived confidence was measured as an average of 8.26 out of 100 pretraining and significantly improved after training (56.91 out of 100); however, there was no significant difference when comparing confidence between groups posttraining (57.65 cadaveric versus 56.05 synthetic; P = 0.78), nor in the measured confidence change pre-And posttraining (P = 0.53). Posttraining, participants displayed a significant improvement in the number of adequately placed sutures; however, there was no significant difference posttraining when comparing groups (2.43 cadaveric versus 2.75 synthetic; P = 0.48). The change in adequate suture placement pre-And posttraining did not reach statistical significance between groups (P = 0.27). After instruction, participants demonstrated a significant improvement in total suture performance scores; however, there was no significant difference when comparing groups (30.04 cadaveric versus 29.80 synthetic; P = 0.90), nor in the total change pre-And posttraining (P = 0.74). Conclusions: Training medium fidelity (tissue versus synthetic) does not significantly influence a student's overall suturing performance. However, formal instruction significantly improves objective competence and perceived confidence. Regardless of the model, surgical departments should emphasize medical student exposure to basic surgical skills education.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2738
JournalPlastic and Reconstructive Surgery - Global Open
Volume8
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

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