Orthopedic boot camp: examining the effectiveness of an intensive surgical skills course.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Changes in health care across the globe have had a profound impact on the number of hands-on surgical training opportunities that are available to residents. In the current study, we examine whether an intensive laboratory-based skills course at the start of orthopedic surgical training is an effective mechanism for teaching core technical skills. METHODS: First-year residents were divided into 3 groups (on-service, n = 8; off-service, n = 8; and a new, competency-based program that has as a major element of the curriculum a focused, intensive skills laboratory-based experience, n = 6). Baseline surgical skills were assessed prior to commencing training. The intensive skills laboratory group was then given an intensive surgical skills course, whereas the other 2 groups embarked on traditional residency. After the surgical skills course, all the residents were assessed for core surgical skills using an objective structured assessment of technical skills (OSATS) procedure. RESULTS: Pretraining scores revealed no differences between the groups of residents using both checklist (F[2,19] = 0.852, P = .442) and global rating scores (F[2,19] = 0.704, P = .507). Post-training scores revealed a significant difference, with residents from the intensive skills laboratory group performing better on both the checklists (on-service = 78.9, off-service = 78.6, intensive skills laboratory = 92.3; F[2,19] = 6.914, P < .01) and global rating scores (on-service = 3.4, off-service = 3.4, intensive skills laboratory = 4.3; F[2,19] = 5.722, P < .01), than the other groups who showed no differences between them. CONCLUSION: The intensive skills course used in this study was highly effective at teaching and developing targeted surgical skills in first-year orthopedic residents. We predict that allowing residents to acquire key technical skills at the start of their training will enhance learning opportunities at later stages of training.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Sonnadara, RR; Van Vliet, A; Safir, O; Alman, B; Ferguson, P; Kraemer, W; Reznick, R

Published Date

  • June 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 149 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 745 - 749

PubMed ID

  • 21236456

Pubmed Central ID

  • 21236456

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1532-7361

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.surg.2010.11.011


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States